ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 Warm Up - England beat Afghanistan by 9 wickets
England won the toss and decided to bowl against Afghanistan at the Kia Oval, London today in their ICC Cricket world Cup warm up match.
Afghanistan 160 (Mohammad Nabi 44, Noor Ali Zadran 30; Jofra Archer 3-32, Joe Root 3-22)
England 161-1 (Jason Roy 89*, Jonny Bairstow 39, Joe Root 29*)
Result - England won by 9 wickets
England win by nine wickets!— Cricket World Cup (@cricketworldcup) 27 May 2019
Jason Roy starred with the bat, scoring a brilliant 46-ball 89* as the hosts chased down a target of 160 in just 17.3 overs.#ENGvAFG SCORECARD ??https://t.co/SzGKq3zHPm pic.twitter.com/hLrcExVORw
Asked to bat first, Afghanistan could only manage to score 160, with Mohammad Nabi 44 and Noor Ali Zadran 30 top scoring - Jofra Archer 3-32 and Joe Root 3-22 were the main wicket takers for England.
In reply, England romped to a 9 wicket win, scoring 161-1 - Jason Roy 89*, Jonny Bairstow 39 and Joe Root 29* hitting the runs required in 17.3 overs.
Before a ball had even been bowled this morning, England had received their first piece of good news.
Mark Wood’s scan on his left foot had come back clear, and their day only got better from there.
A defeat to Australia on Saturday was far from an ideal opening warm-up for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup hosts and No.1 side in the world, particularly when you factored in Wood’s injury.
But Monday at The Oval was a different story, England dispatching Afghanistan with a minimum of fuss and in so doing alleviating any tiny doubts that might have started to creep in.
This was a near-perfect dress rehearsal before the grand unveiling against South Africa next Thursday back here in south London.
The brewing fitness crisis that forced assistant coach Paul Collingwood to field for long stretches at the Hampshire Bowl last weekend, appears to be over before it ever really began.
Wood will be fit and available for selection to take on the Proteas, skipper Eoin Morgan was named in the starting side here at The Oval but such was England’s dominance he was not required to bat.
Adil Rashid bowled six overs to assuage any doubts on his troublesome shoulder and Chris Woakes, picked only as a batsman on Saturday to rest his long-standing knee problem, took the new ball and bowled with real pace and carry.
And then, of course, there was Jofra Archer.
The man on everyone’s lips, rested against Australia but called upon to both field and bat in the end, here he was back to his strongest suit with new ball in hand.
Indeed overall, this looked closer to Morgan’s first choice team that might take the field on Thursday.
And on this and the evidence of the last four years, you have to say they do look like potential winners.
As a new-ball pairing, Archer and Woakes may well face sterner tests.
Here Woakes bowled the fuller and was unlucky to finish wicket-less – but his five overs for only ten runs told their own story.
Archer meanwhile had far too much pace for the Afghan top order – taking two wickets in a fast and fiery first spell and then returning to finish the job at the end.
In between, having won the toss and elected to field, England got a real workout in for their spinners.
The aforementioned Rashid showed no signs of rust, Moeen Ali was metronomic and Joe Root presented himself as a viable third option in the spin department.
Showing an impressive new set of variations that included a leg-spinner out of the back of the hand, Root was the pick with figures of 3/22.
But just as positive from an English perspective was their work in the field.
A couple of run out chances had gone begging against Australia on Saturday, but here they were on it from ball one.
Liam Plunkett and Jonny Bairstow both showed rocket arms from deep to catch out the Afghans while Ben Stokes caught a screamer at slip and Bairstow a fine effort in the deep.
If there was a minor quibble, it was that they allowed Afghanistan off the hook from 92/8 to a more presentable target of 160.
But when Archer returned to finish the job, England were essentially home and hosed.
Jason Roy and Bairstow then continued their red-hot streak at the top of the order – the opening pair are making the magnificent almost appear mundane at this point.
And with Afghanistan chopping and changing their bowlers at will, that meant they even got a good look at the mystery spin of Rashid Khan.
Root joined late on, leaving Morgan back in the hutch to give his fractured finger some much needed rest.
Roy was clearly still enjoying himself however, as are England on the eve of their shot at history on home soil.
England - Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler(wk), Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Jofra Archer, Tom Curran, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Eoin Morgan(c), James Vince, Liam Dawson, Mark Wood
Afghanistan - Mohammad Shahzad, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah(wk), Hashmatullah Shahidi, Samiullah Shinwari, Asghar Afghan, Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib(c), Dawlat Zadran, Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan, Najibullah Zadran, Noor Ali Zadran
©Cricket World 2019