Ahmedabad, Nov 4: In a familiar clash between arch rivals, put into bat, Australia scored 286/10 in 49.3 overs against England in the 36th match of the ICC Men's ODI World Cup 2023, here on Saturday.
In reply, England were 107/4 in 26 overs, with Jonny Bairstow back in pavilion with a first ball duck. He was caught by keeper Josh Inglish of left-arm pace Mitchell Starc.
It was keeper Inglish and bowler Starc, who also got Joe Root out for 13 in 17 balls.
Opener Dawid Malan (50) and English captain Jos Buttler (1) too were dismissed and Australia were bucked up once again to pull a win after an average willow performance earlier in the day.
Earlier, needing a win against familiar foes to strengthen their semi-final entry, Australia perhaps would have loved to put a few more runs on the board.
But defending champions England, languishing at the bottom of the points table, were certainly pumped up to improve their act against familiar opposition.
English fans might have felt if their side faced Aussies earlier, Jos Buttler's men could have been a different side in the tournament.
Australian openers Travis Head and David Warner could not replicate their marauding act against the much controlled and improved English new ball attack.
Chris Woakes sent back Travis Head for just 11 in 10 balls, after he was caught by Joe Root in the slips. Australia got the first shock in 1.4 overs, with the score-board reflecting 11/1.
Warner followed his opening partner after scoring 15 in 16 balls. He was caught by David Willey at mid wicket, while trying to go aerial against Woakes, who bowled with lot of confidence and precision.
The Aussies were reduced to 38/2 in 5.4 overs. The run rate was fine, but they lost a couple of their top order batters bit too early.
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Dependable old warhorse Steven Smith (44 in 52 balls) did not dishearten, but did not continue long either, much to Australia's concern in a must win challenge.
Smith fell to a fine joint effort by the English spinners duo. Trying for a big hit against leggie Adil Rashid, Smith was caught at backward point by the other senior English turner Moeen Ali.
It was once again Rashid the bowler and Ali the fielder at backward point that got Josh Inglish out. Inglish departed after making only 3 in 6 balls. Aussies were 117/4 in 23.1 overs, with England charged up against their old opponents.
Australia's batting mainstay, Marnus Labuschagne once again did well to score a much needed half century and was looking determined for a big score.
But English pacer Mark Wood got him LBW for 71. Labuschagne's 83 -ball resistance ended as England players had a huge celebration.
Trying to play a sweep shot against left-arm fast David Willey, a well settled tall Aussie all-rounder Cameron Green, lost his leg stump needlessly.
Green made 47 in 52 balls, with five clean hits to the fence. He was the second Australian batter to miss a well deserved half century like Steven Smith.
Marcus Stoinis, the rescue-man of several Australian battles tried to repeat his heroics against England on Saturday. But perished after Jonny Bairstow held a great catch at mid wicket, while Stoinis (32 in 35 balls) was trying to hit part-time leg spinner Liam Livingstone over the fence.
Australian skipper Pat Cummins got out at mid wicket too. Mark Wood got his second victim and Dawid Malan grabbing his first catch of the day. As the captain returned back, Aussies were 247/8 in 44.2 overs.
Australia had a much needed 38-run partnership for the 9th wicket between Mitchell Starc (10 in 13 balls) and Adam Zampa (29 in 19 balls). But they could only delay the proceedings till the final over.
Chris Woakes got both of them out and Australia were all out in 49.3 overs scoring 286. Woakes was the best English bowler on the day with 4/54 figure.
The other England bowlers who could have scalps against their names were - Adil Rashid (2/38), Mark Wood (2/70), David Willey (1/48) and Liam Livingstone (1/42). The only one to miss out was turner Moeen Ali.