England’s greatest opening pair in this format made a mockery of what used to be regarded as a monumental target, as they went two up with two to play of this five-match series. Jonny Bairstow, who finished with 128 from 93 balls, and Jason Roy (76 from 55 balls) added a blistering 159 before they were parted in the 18th over, which meant the rest of the chase was no more than a canter. Needing 359 for victory England knocked off the runs with six wickets and 31 balls to spare. This was the second-highest successful run chase by an England side, the highest having taken place just three months ago against West Indies in Barbados. While blasting the ball to every corner of this shrunken ground, Roy and Bairstow – in just their 26th innings together at the top of the order – became England’s most productive opening pair in ODI cricket with considerable scope to add many more runs in the next few years. More immediately the analysts of the world will be searching for frailties. On this type of surface – another belter – they can intimidate the best. Bairstow explained afterwards that the secret was playing… Read full this story
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