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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Matthew Cooper

England crushed by Australia in third ODI in front of sparse crowd at deserted MCG

A mammoth opening partnership between David Warner and Travis Head fired Australia to an emphatic 3-0 whitewash over England in the post T20 World Cup ODI series.

Warner and Head both struck centuries as they put on 269 for the first wicket, with Australia ultimately winning the match by 221 runs after posting the highest ever ODI total at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Against an England side very much ready to head home after a long tour and in front of scant support at the 100,000-seater stadium, Australia's openers turned on the style. Head was the first to reach three figures, bringing up his hundred off 91 balls by smashing Chris Woakes to the boundary.

Warner then joined him a few overs later after punching Olly Stone through the covers for four to reach his first international century since January 2020. The pair both fell in the same over to Stone, who ended up with figures of 4-85, with Warner holing out to David Willey for 106 and Head getting bowled for 152.

Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis, Mitchell Marsh and Alex Carey all played useful cameos towards the end of the innings, with Australia posting 355-5 after a couple of rain showers reduced the game to 48 overs per side.

England were well off the pace with the ball, with only Woakes going at less than seven an over, but this is a series pretty much nobody was interested in. England vice-captain Moeen Ali said it was "horrible" that the series began just four days after their World Cup win, while official attendance figures claimed only 4,524 people turned up to the MCG.

Warner's hundred was his first for Australia in more than two years (WILLIAM WEST/AFP via Getty Images)

"It's a game too far for England," former England spinner Alex Hartley said on commentary for BBC Test Match Special. "They came out and bowled like they're already on the plane home. It's so hard when you're on the back of a World Cup win.

"Australia had the extra week off and they look a lot fresher. When we look back at England's tour of Australia in 2022, they're never going to mention this series. We're going to talk about the World Cup."

And former Australia batter Cameron White was in agreement, adding: "The players would never say it but they're ready for home. You could tell from the two captains at the toss, this series is over."

Official attendance figures said only 4,524 fans turned up to watch the game at the 100,000-seater Melbourne Cricket Ground (Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

In response, England could only muster 142, with Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and Adam Zampa impressing with the ball for Australia. Jason Roy top scored with 33 off 48 balls, while James Vince was the only other batter to pass 20.

Hazlewood and Cummins made the early breakthroughs, reducing England to 66-3 in the 15th over, before Sean Abbot removed Vince for 22. Zampa then got in on the act, taking two wickets in two balls when Buttler holed out to Marcus Stoinis at backward point for one and Woakes was deceived by a googly.

Zampa then took the final England wicket in the 32nd over, bowling Stone for four, with Buttler's side ending what has been a victorious trip to Australia with a disappointing series defeat.

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