Runs rain at Trent Bridge as England rewrite record books against Australia

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Nearly every cricketing side has that one venue where it’s a dauntless force.
For South Africa, it’s often The Wanderers, Johannesburg. Playing at the Sydney Cricket Ground, Australia revel. India come alive at the Eden Gardens. Even the Windies seem a force in motion at the Bridgetown, Barbados.

Is Trent Bridge the fortress of England?

England vs Australia
England players celebrate at Trentbridge (Image: Yahoo News UK)

But when it comes to a side challenging England, anyone who steps inside, the Trent Bridge turns into a self-detonating bomb.
As it did on June 19, 2018- a date belonging to England Cricket Team, but one that had significance for the annals of ODI cricket.
But just like Shakespeare once said, what’s in a name, if you were to alter the phrase a bit and ask a query of cricket-loving fans- what’s in a date, then perhaps none better than visiting the events from June 8-19 would guide you.
From the onset of June 8-12, the White Ferns of New Zealand dismantled the Irish, in posting 3-back-to-back 400 plus team scores, including that mammoth 490-4. Never ever in the history of ODI cricket had such a feat occurred.
A few days later, perhaps registering the prominence of their women counterparts, it was the time for the men to fight back.
So they did.

England pile a mountain at the Trent Bridge

Australia vs England ODIs
Trentbridge Ground (Image: Visit Nottinghamshire)

Resulting from a clinical dismantling of Australia at their favourite hunting ground, England piled a mountain of runs.
They, quite simply, buried Australia under what seemed a debris resulting from the clash between the bat and ball; the leather melting like scrap iron parts and the timber reducing the white ball to shreds.
Never before the saga at Trent Bridge had a score of 481 achieved. And it seems, it’ll take some special doing to go past England’s pillaging of Australia.
Like a perfect blend of beauty and destruction, the bats of English heroes, how else would you address them, tanked fans with a presentation of dominant batting.
It even made for the easiest newspaper headlines, figuratively speaking of the kinds like – England thump as Australia slump.
At Trent Bridge’s unassuming ambience, set alive by a live-wire of six-hitting akin to a packed stadia dancing to a hypnotic rhythm of a rock concert, England ruled a one-sided contest thanks to their top 4.
The punishers- from an Australian perspective- were hard to handle and unforgivable for their lashing. Frontman Jason Roy plundered 82 as together with Jonny Bairstow, he’d lift England to 159 in just the 20th over. So sunken amid runs was Roy that in the end, a run-out sent him back.
Of course, it didn’t help Australia that next man in was Alex Hales. He would plunder 147. He’d stop at nothing, not even from attempting consecutive, miscalculated cross-batted strokes of the tallest and lankiest that Australia had to offer- Billy Stanlake.
Andrew Tye
One day specialist Andrew Tye and Billy Stanlake looked ordinary as England piled 481 on the day (Image: Cricket Australia)

By the time Bairstow departed for a powerful, iron-fisted 139 off 92, together with Hales, he’d raised a 151 run-stand for the 3rd wicket.
This was England’s second 150 plus stand of the game. And cumulatively, Hales and Bairstow would club 31 fours and 10 sixes.
You understood the remarkable in this feat when realising that often on off-days with the bat, teams often manage a 180-200 on the board. Together Hales and Bairstow plundered 184 from just fours and sixes.
But after Bairstow held out in the outfield, giving arguably Australia’s most valuable player in the tour, Ashton Agar, a prized scalp, captain Morgan set afoot to lift Trent Bridge to further delights.
He would only make Australia’s suffering only much worse. In collecting the record for the fastest ever fifty by an Englishman, Morgan, who reached his milestone of 21 balls, would compile solid 67 runs off 30 balls.
His tanking of Stoinis- 4, 6, 6 toward the closing stages- would take the wheels off Australia. In the end, a wonderful fifty would mean, Morgan would now be the top scorer for England in ODI cricket, going past Ian Bell.
Amid scuttling of Australia, as if a handcuffed opponent was made to face a beast inside the ring, you tried to reflect less on the math and more on just what caused the mayhem.
And the answers weren’t that difficult to find- poor bowling orchestrated by failure to pitch the ball well up, inabilities to deliver the yorkers and hardly any well-directed short-pitched balls made Australia the listless.
As the beer served in the stands tasted biting-cold, the tea for the gentleman sweeter than normal seeing all that was happening, England stopped at 481-6.
Chasing nearly 10 an over was for an Australia minus Smith, Warner with only Marsh scoring, like a toddler being asked to scale a lanky summit.

It wasn’t going to happen.

And it didn’t. Except for some fireworks from the bat coming from Travis Head- 51 off 39- and, Marcus Stoinis- 44 off 37. The biggest disappointments were, Maxwell, Paine and, Finch- contributing no more than 19, 5 and, 20.
What would Aaron Finch do to lift his form is something only he can decide. For the moment, he seems to have lost the thing for batting. Why Australia didn’t even engage in an attempted counter-attack- could they have lost anything more- is something that might be playing on Langer’s mind.
But with the series lost 3-0 to England, Australia may do mighty well to avoid a whitewash. However, that’s on the cards.
 

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