Australia won the first T20 against England in fine style in Southampton on Saturday Aug 30 to move one-up in the two-match series; but, England pulled out an equaliser in the second match at Chester-le-Street the following day to draw the series one each.
Australia scored 248 for six wickets in the first T20 with Aaron Finch making a massive 156 off only 63 balls. Although Joe Root scored 90 not out for the home side, they were unable to match the Aussies run-rate and finished on 209 for six wickets on completion of the twenty overs.
Finch’s massive knock was the highest-ever individual score in a Twenty20 international. Hitting 14 sixes and 11 fours he became the first-ever Australian to score a century in a T20 international, while overtaking the previous T20 international record of 123 set by New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum.
In the second T20 match at Chester-le-Street, England won the toss and batting first set Australia a target of 196. Australia in reply were 28 runs short and struggling on 168 with the last pair at the crease at the end of the match.
England’s main driving force came from Alex Hales who hit 94 off 61 balls, while David Warner made 53 runs from 42 balls for the Australians. Spinner Fawad Ahmed claimed three of England’s wickets for 25 runs, which slowed the England run-rate, but England’s score of 195 for 6 wickets was sufficient to win the match in reasonable comfort.
The draw in this T20 series sets up a mouth-watering five one-day match series, which starts at Leeds Headingley tomorrow Sept 6. Pulling out their first win of their international tour indicates that Australia are beginning to fire on more cylinders, but again lost some momentum in the second T20 match.