Australia got off to a dreadful start after they chose to bat first in the semi-final against England. However, the Kangaroos were struck with such blows they’d wouldn’t have imagined of. David Warner, Aaron Finch and Peter Handscomb got out for single-digit scores bringing the score down to 14/3. It was a high-pressure when Steve Smith joined hands with Alex Carey in the middle.
Moreover, Carey was hit on his chin by Jofra Archer and he started bleeding. Yet, he played with some strapping and both these men showed some great resilience. The wicket-keeper played some great cricket before he got out for 46. Steve Smith fought hard, scored 85 runs but got run out towards the end of the innings. This affected Australia’s chances of finishing on a high as they were restricted to 223/10 in 49 overs.
The ever-reliable English openers, once again in the tournament, got the team off to an excellent start. With Jason Roy being the aggressor, they added 124 runs for the opening wicket. They particularly targetted Mitchell Starc – the spearhead of the Australian bowling attack. Thus, they were one step ahead in the game. After they both fell, Joe Root and Eoin Morgan steered England past the winning line. The chase was accomplished in just 32.1 overs with 8 wickets to spare.
Here are the England Player Ratings for the match
Jason Roy – 9.5/10
Jason Roy deserved a hundred in this match. If it was not for the umpiring blunder, he’d have easily got there. The Durban-born provided his team with an electric start and eased the pressure off his partner. Roy even smashed Steve Smith for three consecutive sixes with one of them even going out of the park. He mustered 85 runs off only 65 balls before he was wrongly adjudged out.
Jonny Bairstow – 5/10
When your partner is playing so well, there is no place you’d want to be at other than the non-striker’s end. Bairstow did exactly that and played the second fiddle. He was on 34 before Mitchell Starc got him out LBW. With this wicket, Starc broke the record for most wickets in a single World Cup, i.e., 27 wickets.
Joe Root – 7.5/10
Joe Root came in after the fall of the wicket of Bairstow and kept the intensity going straight away by hitting Starc for three consecutive boundaries. Root continued to play some of the most glorious shots and got his runs at a fair clip. Since there wasn’t much pressure on him, he did the job quite easily. The English Test skipper remained unbeaten 49 on runs off 46 balls.
Eoin Morgan – 7.5/10
English skipper Eoin Morgan got some crucial runs under his belt before the final. It was quite important for him as he did not have the best of times of late. He showed some real positive intent and hit some good boundaries. Morgan ensured that he remained in the middle till his team got over the line and stayed unbeaten on 45 runs. He took 39 balls to score them.
Ben Stokes – 1/10
Ben Stokes bowled four overs with the ball but couldn’t pick up any wickets. He was slightly expensive in comparison to the other bowled and conceded 22 runs.
Jos Buttler – 2.5/10
Some freakish stuff was on display by Jos Buttler on the field. In the 48th over of the first innings, the ball was hit by Steve Smith slightly away from him. But he was quick to get off the blocks and hit the target bullseye under great pressure. This was fabulous stuff from the English vice-captain at that stage of the innings.
Chris Woakes – 9.5/10
Chris Woakes had a dream outing in one of the biggest matches of his career. He opened the bowling for his team and made the most of the conditions. Woakes was the one who got the in-form David Warner for 9 runs. He then also outsmarted Peter Handscomb and Mitchell Starc. The all-rounder was nearly unplayable and the batsmen hardly took any chances off his bowling. Woakes only gave away 20 runs in the 8 overs that he bowled.
Liam Plunkett – 3/10
Liam Plunkett did a decent job in this game but was unlucky not to get any wickets under his belt. In the 8 overs that he bowled, Plunkett conceded 44 runs.
Jofra Archer – 8/10
Jofra Archer bowled an absolute beauty to dismiss Australian captain, Aaron Finch, off the first ball for a duck. The ball nipped back from the length and exploited the weakness of Finch perfectly. The 24-year-old also dismissed the dangerous Glenn Maxwell who was setting himself up for a big one towards the end of the innings.
Adil Rashid – 8/10
Adil Rashid had an excellent outing and picked up three wickets. He was the one who dismissed Alex Carey who could have potentially taken the game away from England. Rashid also sent Marcus Stoinis back to the pavilion for a duck and then got the better of Mitchell Starc as well.
Mark Wood – 4.5/10
Mark Wood bowled really well in this game and tried hard to pick up some wickets. However, he took a while to get his first scalp and that was in the penultimate over of the game. He dismissed Jason Behrendorff for 1 run and finished with figures of 9-0-45-1.
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