London, Jun 25: A marvelous knock by Aaron Finch 100 off 116 guided Australia to a decent total of 285/7 against arch-rivals England in a World Cup match here at Lord's Cricket Ground on Tuesday.
Put into bat first by England, Australia openers Aaron Finch and David Warner played cautiously but eventually gave a solid start.
England bowlers swung the ball and put two openers in all sorts of trouble in the first powerplay. However, Australia openers somehow, managed to save their wicket and scored 44/0 after 10 overs.
After laying a solid foundation in the first powerplay, the duo of Warner-Finch started to cash in and dealt in boundaries to up the ante at Lord's.
Australia crossed the 100-run mark in the 18th over, bringing the third 100-run partnership between Finch and Warner in this World Cup.
During the middle over, England relied on Moeen and Rashid to put a brake on run rate and come up with wickets.
The strategy worked for England as Moeen Ali got rid of Warner and ended 123-run opening stand between Warner (53 off 61) and Finch.
Once Warner got out, Australia batsman took their time and dealt in singles and doubles. They went for a couple of boundaries and took Australia to 162/1 in 30 overs.
In the meantime, England took another much-needed wicket as Khawaja (23 off 29) was bowled by Stokes at the score of 173.
After Khawaja's departure, Steve Smith took the charge to take Austalian innings ahead.
However, England created pressure and fought back by getting rid of Aaron Finch and Glenn Maxwell in quick succession. Australia were four down after crossing the 200-run mark in the 37th over.
Finch hit his 15th ODI hundred and second in this World Cup but departed the very next ball, handing Jofra Archer his first wicket in the match.
Very soon Mark Wood sent back Glenn Maxwell (12) who was looking dangerous with his powerful hittings.
As Maxwell went back to pavilion, all the eyes were on Smith and Stoinis to help Australia to aim towards a big total and act as finisher but poor communication between them resulted in a run out.
Marcus Stoinis was run out as both batsmen ended up at the same end leaving Australia at 227/5. Smith also couldn't do much and got out after scoring 38 off 34.
In the final few overs, England kept on taking wickets at regular intervals and restricted Australia to a decent total of 285/7 runs in 50 overs.
For England, Chris Woakes finished with 2/46 while Jofra Archer, Mark Wood, Ben Stokes, and Moeen Ali claimed a wicket each. (UNI)