Australia skipper Aaron Finch’s 100-run knock guided his team to post 285/7 against England in the ICC Cricket World Cup match in Lord’s on Tuesday. Together with David Warner, Finch shared a first-wicket stand of 123. Australia at one stage were looking to score beyond 300 but failure of middle and lower order batsmen restricted Australia at 285.
Earlier, English captain Eoin Morgan won the toss and opted to bowl first in overcast Lords. Aussies openers Aaron Finch and David Warner were off to a fine start. They were a bit shaky at the beginning, survived some close calls as English pacers bowled with great line and length. Skipper Finch was dropped on 15 when James Vince at backward point could not hold a tough chance. However, Finch-Warner weathered the storm and started to show their ascendency. They crossed the 100-run mark within 17.5 overs. It was the pair's fifth successive partnership of 50 or more at the tournament. The Australia skipper completed a 61-ball fifty and then looked to up the tempo. Both Finch and Warner scored their half centuries and were glaring to score big.
However, in the 22.4 over of the match, England finally got the breakthrough as Moeen Ali removed Warner (53), leaving the Aussies at 123/1. Usman Khawaja came at the crease and along with skipper Finch started to build another formidable alliance. However, Khawaja (23) departed after 50-run partnership with Finch.
Meanwhile, the Aussies skipper was moving towards his second ton of the tournament and he finally got it during the 35th over of the match. However, after reaching his 115-ball 100, in the very next ball he was caught out by Jofra Archer, leaving Australia at 185/3 after 35.3 over. Finch went to his century thanks to a misfield by Woakes but next ball he miscued a hook off Archer and Woakes made no mistake with the catch at fine leg. Finch faced 116 balls for his innings, hitting 11 fours and two maximums. His exit saw Archer become the tournament’s outright leading wicket-taker with 16 scalps.
Two new batsman Steve Smith and Glenn Maxwell were at the crease and Australia crossed the 200-run mark during 37th over and was looking towards a mammoth total. Then they lost the danger-man Maxwell (12) and Marcus Stoinis (8) in quick succession. Smith was trying hard to put a big score on total along with Alex Carey but he also got out at 38 in Woakes’s delivery, leaving Australia at 250/6 after 45.4 overs. Posting a score beyond 300 was looking unlikely at that moment. Australia scored only 70 runs in the last 10 overs.