England beat Australia by one wicket to complete series whitewash


England are 4-0 up against Australia with one match to play Credit AFP

In the ongoing ODI series against Australia, England's batsmen have been scoring big hundreds, albeit against inexperienced Aussie bowling attack, bowlers have been picking up wickets in the middle and death overs and the fielding has been extraordinary.

So let nobody take the result of the Royal London Series lightly. They were bowled out for 205 runs in just 34.4 overs.

Spinner Adil Rashid says England will give it "their best shot" as they try to earn a first whitewash against Australia in any format.

England, fresh from their 481 for six - the highest men's ODI total of all time - in a crushing 242-run win at Trent Bridge on Tuesday, "only" needed 311 at the Riverside.

There were several encouraging features of this success from an England perspective.

JOS BUTTLER rescued England as they pulled off a one-wicket win from an improbable position to complete a 5-0 whitewash of Australia.

But England leg-spinner Rashid stressed the side were keen to avoid getting ahead of themselves, saying of a possible clean sweep: "We're not talking about that at the moment".

And that is a nagging worry.

"I got a couple of 40s, and obviously those aren't good enough as an opener".

Jonny Bairstow, one of England's stars of the series, dragged on a delivery from Stanlake before the fast bowler also dismissed Joe Root and England captain Morgan for a duck.

Roy hopes more than anything, though, that all those heroics prove appropriate milestones to a maiden World Cup title for England.

England will retain the top spot even if they lose the series 2-1 but should they go down 3-0, the rankings table will see India back at the top of the table. Stokes will certainly return to the side when fit - Hales remains the most vulnerable - while Woakes was, perhaps, the more-missed of the two against Australia.

While accepting there were areas that needed attention in England's batting display, in particular, England's captain, Eoin Morgan felt the ability to win from an nearly hopeless position would serve England well.

Australia, who still have a lone Twenty20 worldwide at Edgbaston on Wednesday before their tour ends, arrived in England without six senior players.

No doubt Australia will be stronger by the time the World Cup starts.

"Those players were still playing in Australia - Steve Smith, Warner, Cummins, Hazlewood". But Morgan made an interesting point after the match in Manchester.

Despite the series defeat, Paine believes it is too early to write off Australia's chances at next year's World Cup being hosted by England and Wales.

MICHAEL NESER 5 - The 28-year-old Queensland all-rounder was handed his Australia debut in the first ODI at the Oval and did well with the ball by claiming two wickets.

So Australia are in transition and South Africa are reeling from the loss of several top players.

"You know it's one shot ... but that's probably when you become most flustered, when it's in touching distance".

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