'Hard-fought' cricket pays off for Morgan

England

Captain Eoin Morgan cherished plenty of positives, after an under-strength England unit beat Australia by three wickets in Saturday's fourth ODI at Sophia Gardens in Cardiff.

Captain Eoin Morgan cherished plenty of positives, after an under-strength England unit beat Australia by three wickets in Saturday's fourth ODI at Sophia Gardens in Cardiff.

The hosts have rested batsman Ian Bell, skipper Alastair Cook, fast bowler James Anderson, all-rounder Stuart Broad and spinner Graeme Swann for the five-match series. The uncapped Chris Jordan and Jamie Overton and inexperienced Boyd Rankin and Michael Carberry, meanwhile, were included.

Rankin and Carberry stepped to the fore in Wales, with the seamer clinching two key wickets before the opening batsman secured a handy half-century, as the home side recovered from seamer Clint McKay's early hat-trick.

"It's fantastic to see the new guys gel. There was some hard-fought cricket, particularly with the bat on our behalf. To be three down for none early on, we had our backs to the wall, so me and Carberry dug in and got as much as we could," said Morgan, who is leading the side in the absence of Cook.

"We knew it was going to do enough early on, but to be involved in the hat-trick and find myself at the crease after a few overs, I didn't really expect that.
"A lot of positives, though. Michael got out there and got some time in the middle and scoring some runs is great."

England's victory was capped by wicketkeeper Jos Buttler's unbeaten 65, which spanned a mere 48 deliveries and featured a quintet of boundaries and twin sixes. Buttler found solid support in all-rounder Ben Stokes during a key 75-run alliance inside 10 overs.

"Jos, in particular, had a world-class innings at the end – and Ben has taken a huge amount of responsibility on his shoulders for such a young guy and he's come up trumps and he's certainly been one of our finds for the series," added Morgan.

The fifth and final ODI will be played at the Rose Bowl in Southampton, Hampshire, on Monday.

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