England’s batting is one of the very reasons why they are placed on top of the ICC ODI rankings. The Three Lions are currently playing their fifth match of the 2019 World Cup and have already won three out of their first four games. On Tuesday, at the Old Trafford in Manchester, the Brits again treated the fans with a batting masterclass against Afghanistan, scoring a colossal 397/6 in their 50 overs.
After winning the toss and opting to bat first, the two England openers, James Vince and Jonny Bairstow started things off on a decent note. They added 44 runs for the opening wicket stand before Vince got out for a 31-ball 26 in the 10th over. The pair of Bairstow and Joe Root then got together for a significant stand of 120 runs. Bairstow smacked an excellent innings of 90 runs that included of eight fours and three sixes before getting dismissed by Gulbadin Naib.
It was a special day
After his dismissal, it was the turn of captain Morgan to wreck havoc. The southpaw didn’t show mercy to the opposition and kept finding the boundary with the utmost ease. He brought up his 13th ODI century off 57 balls, thereby becoming the fastest centurion for England in the World Cup, surpassing Jos Buttler. Morgan also set a new world record of 17 sixes in an individual one-day international innings during his staggering knock of 148 runs off 71 balls.
“I’m getting quite old, running around with a bad back, I never thought in my wildest dreams I’d produce an innings like that!” quoted Eoin Morgan after the match.
“I had an extremely bad back after the last game but our medical staff have done wonders with medication and extensive treatment. I have pretty much been living with the physio. It was a special day. It’s the World Cup. We’re loving playing in it. On the big stage, it is nice to do,” he added.
Morgan’s masterclass was the centerstage of England’s 397-6. That was the highest total of the tournament so far and the largest England had made at any World Cup, surpassing their 386-6 against Bangladesh in Cardiff 10 days ago. Even though bottom of the table Afghanistan, suffering their fifth defeat in five matches, posted their highest World Cup total of 247-8 they were never up with the required run-rate.
“We are where we want to be. The next two or three games are pretty crucial,” Morgan concluded.