Joe Root’s masterful 133*, Alex Hales’ 95 and Eoin Morgan’s undefeated 75 helped England kickstart their ICC Champions Trophy 2017 campaign in style, as they emphatically gunned down Bangladesh’s 305/6 in 47.2 overs with eight wickets intact to register their first victory of the multi-team event.
A target in the excess of 300 was comfortably chased down — a pattern that may continue over the next 15 days — by a relentless English batting line-up, with Root slamming his 10th ODI ton to script an easy win for the home side. England did it in partnerships; Hales and Root forged a vital 159-run union for the second wicket to set the platform before skipper Morgan joined Root to form a decisive, unbroken 143-run stand.
Earlier, Bangladesh looked set for a total above 330 for the most part of their innings, especially after a record-breaking 166-run stand between Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim. Tamim Iqbal scored a splendid 128, bringing up his ninth ODI century in the process, while Rahim made a vital contribution of 79. The duo adapted contrasting methods; Tamim played the role of aggressor while Rahim sticked to his innovative, less-risky style of play.
But both of them fell off consecutive deliveries in the 45th over, leaving two new batsmen at the crease meaning Bangladesh could only add only 44 runs in the last 5.2 overs to finish at 305 — a total that proved insufficient in the end.
Bangladesh’s decision to go with Imrul Kayes instead of one specialist bowler didn’t work too well, as captain Mashrafe Mortaza had to slip in overs from non-regulars Soumya Sarkar and Mosaddek Hossain. While English batsmen respected Mustafizur Rahman, who looked threatening in his initial burst, they were harsh on anything pitched short or too full by Shakib Al Hasan and experienced Rubel Hossain.
England 308/2 ( Joe Root 133*, Alex Hales 95, Eoin Morgan 75*) beat Bangladesh 305/6 (Tamim Iqbal 128, Mushfiqur Rahim 79) by eight wickets.
“When the guys bat like that, it’s certainly a lot easier than it used to be. Joe Root and an in-form Alex Hales are huge factors. Joe is the glue in our side, he’s scored a lot or runs, he’s not slow, it’s at pace and today he was outstanding. I want to lead from the front this tournament, put ourselves in a good position after this game, two to go in the group stages.” Eoin Morgan, captain England, said (ESPNCricinfo)
“I think 305 was a little bit short, but they batted really well and took the game away from us. Initally, getting used to the pitch, the openers take a bit of time; at the end, when we have wickets in hand, we have to do better. [Balance of side?] First match we decided to go with eight batters, but we have to think about it. The main bowlers must bowl better. [Tamim catch?] I think the umpires’ decision is final.” Mashrafe Mortaza, captain Bangladesh, said (ESPNCricinfo).