Australia’s new dawn was plunged into darkness when they were beaten by 242 runs by a rampant record-breaking England in the third ODI, at Nottingham.
The England target of 482 to win, a world record innings for men’s ODIs, was always out of reach, but Australia’s response was woeful as they lost with 13 overs to spare. And with that went the series, 3-0 down with two to play. It was England’s largest runs victory and Australia’s largest runs defeat.
England captain Eoin Morgan’s 67 off 30 balls had set the pace for the record score, which beat the previous best by 57 – set by England against Pakistan at this ground in 2016 – after Jonny Bairstow had scored 139 off 92 balls and Alex Hales 147 off 92.
Morgan had a strike-rate of 223, including three fours and six sixes to take his team so close to the world ODI best of 490, set by New Zealand Women against Ireland Women earlier this month.
What made it even worse for Australia was that Tim Paine won the toss and chose to bowl. Bad decision.
In fact, England had scored 310 before Australia took their first wicket. Jason Roy ran himself out by irrationally calling for a second run after he had scored 82 off 61 balls (seven fours, four sixes). It was not as if they needed to up the run-rate: at that stage they had 159 off 19.3 overs, going at more than eight an over.
Bairstow was the next to go, lazily slapping left-arm spinner Ashton Agar to deep mid-wicket after a magnificent knock of 139 of 92 balls, with 15 fours and five sixes. Jos Buttler went for 11, but Alex Hales powered on to 147 off 92 (16 fours, five sixes), contributing to a stand of 124 off just 10 overs with Morgan, who scored the fastest fifty by an England player, off 22 balls.
A total of 21 sixes and 41 fours were scored as England ended on 481-6.
In contrast, Australia scored just seven sixes and 15 fours, with Travis Head the top scorer with 51 off 39 balls. The spin of Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali broke the back of the Australian innings as they took seven wickets between them.
It was not a great start to the new era under Paine and coach Justin Langer after the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.
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