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Ruthless Curran ensures happy farewell for Englishmen

Tom Curran’s ruthless bowling and Joe Root’s composed innings made the difference as England edged Australia by 12 runs to wrap up their Australia tour with a 4-1 victory in the one-day international series on Sunday. 

Winning the toss at the WACA grounds in Perth, Australia bowled out England for a moderate 259 in 47.5 overs after skipper Steven Smith decided to bat first. 

Andrew Tye’s majestic pace bowling in a luxuriant Perth pitch played momentous role to restrict England to a total that initially looked achievable. Curran, who gave England the breakthrough, ran riot over Aussies in the returning spell with key wickets to dismiss the hosts for 247 in 48.2 overs. 

English openers Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow provided a brisk start adding 71 runs for the first wicket before Tye struck with the wicket of the former. Roy’s innings of 46-ball 49 was studded with seven fours and a six. 

Bairstow then added another 46-run stand with new man Alex Hales as England continued to trouble the Aussies. Mitchell Starc bowled Bairstow with the opener making 48 from 44 deliveries hitting four boundaries and two sixes.

Root joined Hales and two batsmen consolidated the innings forging 34-run third wicket partnership. The 151-2 then became 157-4 after Mitchell Marsh struck in his consecutive overs removing Hales (35) and skipper Eoin Morgan (three).

Root continued to rebuild the innings with Jos Buttler (21) but Tye continued to strike from the other end. England’s rest of the innings was built around Root who was the ninth batsman out after making 62 off 68 balls with two hits to the fence for his 26th ODI half century.

Tye returned the figures of 5-46, his first fifer in limited-over cricket and best bowling figures in one dayers. 

The Aussie batsmen got the start but failed to convert, except for Marcus Stoinis, who was promoted up the order at No 3. After Curran bowled opener David Warner (15), Stoinis and Travis Head (22) led the recovery with a 62-run second wicket stand.

After Head was run out, Moeen Ali removed Smith (12) and Marsh (13) reducing Australia to 133-4 in 23.5 overs. Stoinis kept his side in the game adding 56 runs for the fifth wicket with Glenn Maxwell. Just as it seemed Australia were heading towards their second win in the series, spinner Adil Rashid got rid of Stoinis to leave the game evenly poised.

Curran soon removed Maxwell (34) and Mitchell Starc (duck) in a space of three balls, while Ali had Tye (eight) caught by Morgan as Australia were 203-8 with 62 balls left in the game. But Tim Paine (34) then brought Australia back in the game but it was Curran who sealed the victory removing the former and Adam Zampa (11).

Man-of-the-match Curran also economically in his 9.2-over spell picking up five wickets. 

Score in brief :-

England 259/10 (47.4)

J Root 62 (68)

A Tye (9.4-46-5)

Australia 247/10 (48.2)

M Stonis 87 (99)

T Curran (9.2-0-35-5)

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