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All-round Willey powers England to comfortable win in warm-up game

David Willey excelled with both the bat and the ball
David Willey excelled with both the bat and the ball

England 139-2 (Willey 79) beat
Cricket Australia XI 136-8 (Handscomb 43) by eight wickets
Warm-up game, Twenty20 International Tri-Series, Canberra

David Willey picked three wickets and followed it with a 79-run knock as England registered a comfortable eight-wicket win chasing 137 against Cricket Australia XI in the warm-up game of the Twenty20 International Tri-Series in Canberra.

England won the toss and decided to bowl first. Willey (3-32) gave a perfect start to England as he removed both Peter Nevill (6) and Nic Maddinson (8) in the third over but Cricket Australia XI still ended the powerplay with a good scoring rate of 46 for two.

Adil Rashid (1-14) introduced in the seventh over struck immediately when he removed James Faulkner (2) and it was only Peter Handscomb (43) with his 29-ball knock that had seven boundaries in it kept the home side in the game.

As Cricket Australia XI was recovering and reached 71 for three at halfway mark, a triple striker from Liam Dawson (3-16) pegged them back before Seb Gotch (22) and Gurinder Sandhu (19) consolidated them to 136 for eight in the 20 overs. Dawson and Willey were the pick of the England bowlers with three wickets apiece.

In the chase, Willey (79) and James Vince (26) got the team off to 49 runs off the first five overs but the decisive moment came in the sixth over when Nathan Lyon (0-43) came to bowl. Willey plundered five sixes and a boundary as England reached 83 for naught in the powerplay. In the process he even completed a 23-ball fifty.

Even though Mitchell Swepson (2-33) provided Cricket Australia XI with some consolation with the wickets of Willey and Vince, Dawid Malan (21 not out) and Eoin Morgan (8 not out) ensured England reached the target in the 13th over with eight wickets in hand.

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