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England outclassed by Australia for second time in week

The tourists suffered a seven-wicket defeat as their Trans-Tasman Series final hopes were dented.

England were outclassed by Australia for the second time in a week to leave their hopes of reaching the final of the Trans-Tasman Series in the balance.

The manner of their seven-wicket defeat at the MCG was painfully familiar for anyone who saw their slump in Hobart – a fragile first-innings total reeled in with ease by a vibrant Australian XI crammed with talent from the Big Bash.

The only real difference was of scale, England’s 137 for seven falling 18 runs short of their previous losing tally and the haste with which it was knocked off, with 33 balls unused here.

Victory makes it three in three for Australia, who are assured of a place in the Auckland showpiece later this month, leaving England to scrap it out with New Zealand for the remaining berth.

Tweet of the match

Stat of the match

Alex Hales became the fourth Englishman to earn 50 caps in Twenty20 cricket, joining current team-mates Eoin Morgan and Jos Buttler as well as Stuart Broad and Luke Wright. The next active player on the list is Chris Jordan, with 28.

False start

Hales, Jason Roy and Dawid Malan all came and went within four overs – the first time England have lost three wickets in the powerplay since their defeat in the World Twenty20 final in April 2016. Hales and Roy were also opening that day, with Morgan completing the trio.

Warner on the wane

When David Warner emerged on the scene in 2009, he was seen as a white-ball blazer with an uncertain future in Test cricket. Now edging firmly towards veteran status that position has been reversed. Since ending the Ashes with knocks of 103, 86 and 56 he has played five ODIs and three T20s averaging just 10.63 and falling in single figures on five occasions.

What’s next?

New Zealand v England, Wellington (Trans-Tasman Series, Feb 13)
New Zealand v Australia, Auckland (Trans-Tasman Series, Feb 16)

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