Led by skipper Eoin Morgan, England thrashed Australia by three wickets in the fourth ODI at Headingely and levelled the series 2-2. This result also ensured that the last ODI at Old Trafford will not be meaningless in the context of the series. Batting first, Australia had scored 299 runs in their 50 overs which meant England needed exactly a run per ball to win the game. Morgan shown his team mates how to pace your inning when you are chasing 300+ score. England won the game with ten balls to spare but the game involved a lot of drama but David Willey ended all drama with a six down the ground off John Hastings.
Chasing a sore of 300, England didn’t get off to a good start which they would have wanted. Alex Hales was trapped in front of the wicket by Pat Cummins for duck. Jason Roy and James Taylor put together a good partnership of 72 runs in just 53 deliveries which kept England in the match. But both these players got dismissed after settling into the crease and hosts were reduced to 89 for 3 in the 16th over. This brought two left hander, Eoin Morgan and Ben Stokes on the crease and they played very well together. They complemented each other very well and made a match winning partnership. Both these batsmen added 91 runs for the fourth wicket and this partnership was followed by another good partnership between Morgan and Bairstow of 58 runs. Maxwell took two great catches and tried to turn the game towards visitors. Liam Plunkett also played a little cameo and then Moeen Ali and David Willey ensured that no more further drama would happen and England will cross the line.
Earlier in the day, Australia had won the toss and elected to bat first but their decision to bat first turned out to be a disaster one for them. They lost their three wickets inside ten over. Joe Burn never looked to repeat his performance here in the ODI what he had done in the tri-series against India A and South Africa A. David Willey took all three early wickets. Joe Burn was bowled and then skipper Steve Smith was trapped in front of the wickets. Soon, Aaron Finch was caught behind by Bairstow for 15. Australia fight back was led by George Bailey and Glenn Maxwell. Both these batsmen put together a partnership of 137 runs for the fourth wickets which brought back visitors into the game and they starting thinking of more than respectable score. Glenn Maxwell departed in the 30th over of the inning and the was 167 runs then. Australia were thinking of somewhere about 320 but they couldn’t capitalise on the platform provided by Bailey and Maxwell. After the departure of Maxwell, Mitchell Marsh played 24 balls for his 17 runs which do not include any boundary. Soon after Marsh, Bailey also departed for 75 runs. Playing his first game, Marcus Stoinis failed to make his mark at international level. At this juncture, Australia were 215 for 7 and it looked that they will struggle to reach in the mid 200. But Mathew Wade and John Hastings played a good cameo late in the inning and ensured that Australia would reach near 299.
Man of the Match: Eoin Morgan