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Taylor, spinners keep England in the hunt

Ali and Rashid take five wickets between them as Australia slumps to 93-run defeat

Taylor, spinners keep England in the hunt - Cricket News
James Taylor plays a shot.

James Taylor scored his maiden One-Day International century before Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid helped England register a 93-run win over Australia at Old Trafford on Tuesday (September 8) to keep the host in the hunt in the five-match series.

Australia could manage just 207 all out in reply to England’s 300 for 8.

Mooen Ali, the offspinner, and Adil Rashid, the legspinner, shared five wickets between them, with Ali's 3 for 32 in his full 10 overs the allrounder's best ODI figures as together, they took a combined 5 for 73 in 20 overs.

In its chase, Australia made a cautious start with Aaron Finch, brought into the side after David Warner was ruled out with a fractured thumb, and Joe Burns adding 33 for the first wicket in six overs. Burns struggled for 18 balls to get going before being dismissed by Steven Finn. 

Steve Smith walked in at No. 3 and showed glimpses of brilliance in his short knock of 25 but his promising innings was cut short by a stunning effort from Finn, who held a one-handed catch at short midwicket off Rashid. Finch carried on to scored 53 to lead Australia’s charge. 

Rashid, gaining sharp turn, then dismissed Finch when he holed out to long-on. His exit was the start of a collapse that saw three wickets lost for 35 runs to leave Australia struggling at 141 for 5.

Glenn Maxwell, after reverse-hitting Ali for two fours in as many balls, tried to make it three in a row only to be caught off a top edge by Jonathan Bairstow, the wicketkeeper.

George Bailey (25) obligingly drove an Ali full toss straight to Ben Stokes at midwicket. Jason Roy then held a remarkable catch, running round from long-on, after Ashton Agar launched Liam Plunkett high into the deep.

Roy lost the ball in the floodlights and, arching backwards, dropped a one-handed chance only to grab the ball at the second attempt before hitting the turf. Finn ended the match emphatically by bowling Matthew Wade (42).

Earlier, Taylor's century set the platform for another 300 plus score in the series after Eoin Morgan won the toss. Taylor, brought back for this series with Ashes-winner Joe Root rested, was out for 101.

Taylor’s first fifty included just one four and he managed just five in total but, significantly, he got England to a score their bowlers could defend. 

Taylor and Morgan (62) added 119 for the third wicket but the partnership would have been curtailed had not Wade missed a stumping off Agar when Morgan was on 15. 

Roy (63) gave the England innings a solid start and scored his second half-century of the series but fell trying to chip Agar over short cover. The opener was caught by Maxwell on the second attempt. 

Taylor went to his hundred in nervous fashion when his drive off Pat Cummins hit non-striker Chris Woakes's bat and rebounded into the stumps. He sprinted down the pitch and dived for a definitive scrambled single.

The fourth match of the series will be played at Headingley on Friday.

To see the full scorecard of this game, please click here.

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