England were grateful for Dawid Malan’s fantastic century in their first outing since being crowned T20 World Cup champions as they posted 287 for nine in the opening ODI against Australia.
Just four days on from becoming the first men’s side to hold ODI and T20 World Cups simultaneously, a much-changed England lurched to 66 for four and 118 for five but Malan held the innings together well.
Malan missed the knockout stages of the T20 World Cup because of an injury to his left groin and took any frustration out on Australia’s bowlers, clubbing four sixes and 12 fours in his 134 off 128 balls.
We set Australia a target of 288 👌
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) November 17, 2022
On a sunny afternoon at Adelaide, Pat Cummins marked his first match as Australia ODI captain with three for 62 after winning the toss while Adam Zampa chipped in with three for 55.
There were just three survivors from the England side that defeated Pakistan on Sunday in Jos Buttler, Phil Salt and Chris Jordan, while Luke Wood came in for his ODI debut.
England had made no attempt to hide their dissatisfaction at how soon they were back in action after the World Cup, with Moeen Ali describing this three-match series as “horrible”.
They made an underwhelming start as Jason Roy’s lean run continued with a scratchy six off 11 balls but he was largely blameless for his dismissal as Mitchell Starc hooped one back in through the gate.
Cummins exploited some early movement to find the outside edges of Salt then James Vince while Marcus Stoinis, in his first over, jagged one back to castle Sam Billings for 17.
That brought out Buttler, who alongside Alex Hales a week ago had put on an unbroken 170 at this ground to lead England to one of their greatest white-ball victories against India, and he was busy early on.
There was a glorious back-foot punch for four off Stoinis from Buttler but the England captain holed out for 29 off Zampa, who in the same over caught Malan’s outside edge but Alex Carey was unable to hang on to a tough chance when the batter was on 42.
Malan, also put down on 33 by Ashton Agar, was strong either side of the shorter square boundaries but then took down Cummins with a wonderfully lofted straight six en route to a 64-ball half-century.
Malan whipped a Cummins slower ball for six, almost down on one knee, while the left-hander was particularly proficient on the sweep against Zampa.
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) November 17, 2022
Liam Dawson (11) and Jordan (14) made brief contributions but both had departed by the time Malan brought up a second ODI ton off 107 balls, after which he started to take more risks.
Agar and Zampa were both dispatched over the rope but the former’s incredible agility on the boundary, offloading the ball while in mid-air, denied Malan a fifth six of the innings.
In the next over Malan holed out to Agar off Zampa but Willey offered some useful runs down the order to finish unbeaten on 34 off 40 balls as England added 72 in the last 10 overs.