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Finch’s stunning 156 gives Australia win

Australia rides on opener’s record-breaking innings to win first international match since February 10

Finch’s stunning 156 gives Australia win - Cricket News
Aaron Finch of Australia celebrates his century.
Aaron Finch's record-breaking innings led Australia to its first win in an international match in 200 days as it beat England by 39 runs in the first Twenty20 International at Southampton on Thursday (August 29).

Finch's stunning 156, the highest individual score in all T20Is, was the cornerstone of Australia's 248 for 6, which was also the second-highest team score at this level. Faced with a colossal chase, England, who wrapped up a 3-0 Ashes series win with a draw at The Oval on Sunday, lost early wickets and finished on 209 for 6. 

Finch's runs came from just 63 balls he comfortably surpassed the previous world record of 123 set by Brendon McCullum against Bangladesh at Pallekele in September last year. 

Finch got off the mark, reached his fifty, hundred and 150 with sixes. Indeed, his 14 sixes were also a world record for an individual T20I innings, with Finch also striking 11 fours. 

Finch's innings ended when he was bowled by Jade Dernbach, who, in the midst of the mayhem, took three wickets for 34 runs in four overs. In view of what was to come, England started well when David Warner lost control of his bat as he holed out off Broad for one. 

But from then on, the innings belonged to Finch. His 50 came off 27 balls, with a straight six off Ravi Bopara, and he appeared on course to beat Richard Levi's record 45-ball century. 

Finch had to be content with a 47-ball hundred, going to the landmark with a top-edged six, while McCullum's previous record was surpassed with yet another six, this time over cover off Broad. 

Dernbach finally bowled Finch and removed Shane Watson as Australia fell short of Sri Lanka's T20I record team total of 260 for 6 against Kenya in Johannesburg in 2007. 

Mitchell Johnson and Josh Hazlewood then took four wickets between them as England slumped to 42 for 4. However, Joe Root's commendable 90 not out – his first T20I innings – off just 49 balls, including 13 fours and a six, prevented a humiliating loss for England. 

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