Curran steps up as England beat Australia in final ODI
Perth: England finished their testing tour of Australia on a high on Sunday with a thrilling 12-run win in the fifth and final one-day international in Perth.
In the first match at the new Perth Stadium, the tourists set Australia 260 to win in front of a record West Australian cricket crowd of 53,781.
Despite resting frontline bowlers Chris Woakes and Mark Wood, and having quick Jake Ball struggling with illness, the tourists managed to defend their total. Young seamer Tom Curran was the match-winner with five wickets as Australia were dismissed for 247 with 10 balls remaining. England, beaten 4-0 in a lopsided Ashes Test series, bounced back to claim the limited-over series 4-1. The result continued the dismal recent run of the World Cup holders in one-dayers and Australian captain Steve Smith was again left frustrated with both batting and bowling.
Australia, thanks largely to Marcus Stoinis who was promoted to number three and made 87, looked to be cruising to victory on 189 for four. But the loss of Stoinis, caught at long-on off leg- spinner Adil Rashid, proved crucial. Curran returned to the attack and removed Glenn Maxwell (34) and Mitchell Starc (0) in the space of three balls as Australia lost their way. When Tim Paine and Adam Zampa threatened to snatch the match with a gritty ninth-wicket stand, Curran came back into the attack and clean-bowled the latter with his third ball.
In just his third one-day international and his first of the series, the 22-year-old then delivered the last rites by bowling Paine for 34. Curran finished with 5-35 and also had two catches dropped from his bowling, both by the normally reliable Jonny Bairstow. Curran, named man of the match, was ecstatic with the result.
Moeen Ali went cheaply in the English innings. But he claimed 3-55, including the crucial wickets of Smith (12) and Mitch Marsh (13) – the latter falling to a superb reflex return catch. Much to the delight of the crowd, Tye was the star with the ball, cleaning up the English tail to finish with 5-46 off 9.4 overs.