ENG vs AUS, 2nd ODI Review: England take a 2-0 lead; Roy and Buttler steal the headlines

ENG vs AUS, 2nd ODI Review: England take a 2-0 lead; Roy and Buttler steal the headlines

England registered a 38-run victory, which earned them a 2-0 lead in the series.

Liam Plunkett (L) and Jason Roy of England celebrate the wicket of Marcus Stoinis
Liam Plunkett (L) and Jason Roy of England celebrate the wicket of Marcus Stoinis of Australia. (Photo by Julian Herbert/Getty Images)

Australia’s agony is growing like a virus as they failed to go past England once again. Shaun Marsh’s mind-boggling hundred got his side very close, but eventually, England were the better side in every department and ran away with the game. Australia have some serious thinking to do as they’re yet to find the match-winning combination.

Batting first, England got off to a flying start with Jonny Bairstow smacking the bowlers to all parts. His opening partner Jason Roy was in a merciless mood as well and both players helped their team get off to a flying start. The duo added 63 runs in just 8 overs before Bairstow was dismissed for a 24-ball 42.

After the keeper-batsman departed, Roy upped the ante and he added another crucial partnership with Alex Hales. Hales played an uncharacteristic inning as he preferred strike rotation. Roy completed a well-compiled half-century and was looking set for a big knock.

Against the run of play, Hales and Roy’s 50-run partnership came to an end when Hales was set on his way back by Jhye Richardson. With skipper Root at the other end, Roy went bonkers and England amassed a majority of the runs in the middle overs. Root too played some delightful shots, but Stoinis outfoxed him in the 28th over.

The new man in the crease Jos Buttler once again proved the world why he’s rated as one of the best finishers in the game right now. He and Roy added 60 runs in very quick time as Roy brought up his 5th ODI hundred in the 32nd over and England started eyeing a total in excess of 330.

Roy got dismissed after registering a scintillating 120 off 108 balls and the onus fell on Buttler to get them to a big score. Although Buttler didn’t receive any considerable support, he didn’t stutter and performed his job with perfection. His 16th ODI fifty helped England go past 300 and almost got to the 350 mark.

Eventually, they managed 342 for the loss of 8 wickets as Buttler remained unbeaten on 91. Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson and Andrew Tye picked up a brace each for the visiting unit.

Shaun Marsh fights a lone battle

The Australian management took a stunning decision to send Aaron Finch in the middle order, which saw Travis Head open the innings alongside youngster D’Arcy Short. Head got off to a swift start but bottled the opportunity trying to be a little too audacious.

Shaun Marsh came to the crease in the 4th over and played one of his best knocks in limited-overs cricket. Unfortunately for the senior cricketer, he absolutely had no support coming from the other end. Marsh firstly added 53 runs for the second wicket with D’Arcy Short, before he gave away his wicket to Moeen Ali.

From then on, wickets kept tumbling at regular intervals. Stoinis and Finch hung in there for short periods and despite Marsh doing his best at one end, these two were dismissed for low scores and at crucial junctures in the game. Marsh in the process completed a fifty, but the target was a country mile away.

He got some quality support from Glenn Maxwell, who managed to stick at the other end with patience. Marsh was the aggressor in this partnership, which was quite unusual, but it was the need of the hour. The left-hander and Maxwell added 54 runs before England’s trump card Ali once again turned out to be the partnership breaker.

Ashton Agar and Marsh had nothing to lose at that point as the target was a long shot. They took some chances and fortune favoured them for a while. Whilst Marsh completed a brilliant century, their partnership started to grow in confidence and victory seemed a possibility.

But Adil Rashid, who was hammered in the middle overs, maintained composure and sent Agar back in the 43rd over. Skipper Tim Paine and Marsh started playing big shots but were living dangerously. Eventually, both fell in quick succession and the game was in the hands of England.

Liam Plunkett struck big as he rattled Marsh’s stumps, but not before the southpaw scored a brilliant 131. It didn’t take long for the English to take the final two wickets as they registered a timely 38-run victory, which earned them a 2-0 lead in the series.

Brief Scores

England: 342/8 in 50 overs (Jason Roy 120, Jos Buttler 91*; Kane Richardson 2/56)

Australia: 304 all out in 47.1 overs (Shaun Marsh 131, Ashton Agar 46; Liam Plunkett 4/53, Adil Rashid 3/70)

England won by 38 runs.

Man of the Match: Jason Roy