Cricket

Preview: England desperate to draw T20 series

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England arrived in Durham on Friday afternoon with the record breaking innings from Aaron Finch fresh in their minds going into Saturday’s final T20 as the hosts look to level the series.

The Australian opening batsman plundered 156 off just 63 balls to smash past the previous highest individual score in International T20 of 123, made by Brendon McCullum. England did not embarrass themselves in attempting to chase 249 to win though as Joe Root made an impressive 90 not out as they lost by 39 runs at the Ageas Bowl.

The hosts don’t have long to reassess their plans after flying from Heathrow to the north east on Friday they need to win the final game to draw the two-game series 1-1.

Boyd Rankin and Michael Carberry were two noticeable absentees from the side that lined up at Southampton and both have a chance of being selected. It appeared England preferred Root to Carberry, a decision that ultimately paid off but his form in the Friends Life t20 means the Hampshire batsman could play at Chester-le-Street.

Captain Stuart Broad says from a bowling point of view he’ll be glad to perform on a different wicket at Durham

"I think the batsmen want to pitch a tent up and the bowlers have their passport in their pocket ready for Durham,” joked the Nottinghamshire bowler after the record 457-run contest.

Root is expected to be fit for the 2.30pm start despite taking a nasty hit on the mouth trying to play the pull shot into the leg side during his innings on the south coast. The ball flew off his top edge and through the grill of his helmet and Broad admits it was a superb innings considering the circumstances.

"It makes his knock even better. He’s got over an inch laceration inside his mouth which is quite a nasty one.

“He was spitting out quite a bit of blood. It's not the first blow he's had to his face, I'm sure he'll get over it."

Attention will quickly turn to the 50-over format after Saturday with a One Day International in Ireland on Tuesday 3rd September before the five-game series with Australia starts next Friday.

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Topics:
England cricket
T20
Cricket
Australia cricket

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