Finch hundred propels Australia a six wicket win over England in Melbourne
Chasing a target of 270 to win, Finch’s well constructed century, alongside David Warner’s 65, helped Australia set up a match-winning platform against the beleagured tourists. Finch in the process became the first Victorian to score a hundred at the MCG. Finch and Warner put on 163 runs for the first wicket, which is the highest for Australia against England in ODI cricket, before Warner was caught at long on of the bowling off Joe Root. Ben Stokes completed a skier to send back Warner on 65. Shane Watson (0) then quickly followed his team-mate back as he lasted just two balls before he was bowled by Chris Jordan, who bowled much better than what his figures of 1/50 suggets. Michael Clarke with a neat 44 runs ensured there would be no slip-ups as he and Finch combined for a 72-run partnership for the third wicket. Finch eventually fell for 121 off 128 balls, top-edging Stokes to Gary Balance, who had dropped Finch on 8 runs, at third-man. Clarke then lost his cool as he was caught by Alastair Cook off Tim Bresnan’s bowling, but Maxwell and Bailey ensured Australia does not lose further wickets and chased down the target with little over four over in the bag. Earlier in the day, Alaistar Cook won the toss and choose to bat on a beautiful day at the MCG. But, the misery continued for skipper Cook, following a horrendous Test series, as he was dismissed for just 4 runs on the very first over of the, edging Clint McKay behind to the Brad Haddin. Joe Root soon followed his skipper after making a dour three runs when he was adjudged leg-before off the bowling if McKay. Gary Balance, who was only plaing his second ODI, joined experience Ian Bell at the crease. The duo put on a 40-run partnership for the third wicket before Bell inexplicably was bowled by Xavier Doherty for 41 runs when he tried to slog the spinner. In the hindsight, though, England’s innings finally found momentum after Bell’s dismissal when Eoin Morgan, who scored a fluent 50, put on crucial 83 runs for the fourth wicket with Balance, before Morgan holed out to Nathan Coulter-Nile trying to score some easy runs off Maxwell. Ballance was the top scorer for the visitors with a decent 79 off 96 balls. Some late hitting from Ravi Bopara (17), Stokes (21) and Jos Buttler (34 off 24) allowed England to post 7/269.
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