Jos Buttler inspires England to ODI series win over Australia
01:29, Jan 22, 2018
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A scintillating century from Jos Buttler brought England a 16-run win and a one-day global series victory against Australia in Sydney on Sunday.
Buttler hit the last ball of the English innings for two off Mitchell Starc to bring up his century, while Woakes hit five fours and two sixes in his 36-ball 53.
Wood conceded only two runs from the last two balls of his over and once Woakes had Stoinis caught by Alex Hales out on the midwicket, England could dream of their series victory.
Buttler, who came in at 107-4 after Root went, was reverse-sweeping early on and hit England's first six of the innings in the 29th over, which shows just how tricky England were finding it.
The 27-year-old started patiently and his first half-century took 52 balls, while the next 50 took just 31 balls.
The hosts, set 303 to win by England after winning the toss and electing to bowl, managed only 286 for six.
Woakes played his part to perfection, a short-arm pull for six the best among a handful of authoritative blows. His late surge enabled England to reach a total which had seemed out of their reach until the final few overs.
While still behind the required run-rate, Australia were edging into contention at 181-3 in the 34th over until the controversial dismissal of captain Steve Smith, caught behind by Buttler off Mark Wood for 45.
Third umpire Kumar Dharmasena deliberated for just under four minutes, before deciding there wasn't enough evidence to overturn the soft on-field call of out.
Marsh looked to counter attack by targeting Adil Rashid, but holed out to long on off the leg-spinner - who earlier trapped the risky Finch lbw - leaving Australia having to rebuild when they should have been accelerating.
Buttler, who smoked 28 runs from his last 11 balls, and Woakes's blistering partnership propelled England to 302-6 - a total that proved just enough for the tourists to claim a consolation series victory.
Australia has lost their way tactically and constant chopping and changing of personnel means they are yet to settle on a combination that can match it with the best teams.
Smith dropped Morgan (41) on 18 off spinner Adam Zampa, while Starc got his fingers to a tough caught-and-bowled chance.
But after Morgan and Buttler had patiently rebuilt the innings, Australia's bowlers had no answer to the inventive and aggressive late assault.
England has sealed the ODI series against Australia following an impressive win over their arch-rivals in the third One-Dayer at the SCG.
"The three big Test quicks (are back) so a good opportunity for them to hopefully stamp their authority and help us win a game of cricket", Smith said.
"Jos was probably the difference between the sides".
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A four-time Gold Glove Award-winner, his defense also suffered, as he posted a minus-5.6 UZR/150 and minus-two DRS. Now healthy, Gonzalez figures to compete in spring training with Smith for the starting first base job.
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