Captain Eoin Morgan reflected on an “outstanding” performance from England, and fast bowler Steven Finn in particular, after his team’s bonus-point trouncing of India in Brisbane.
England badly needed a victory after last Friday’s opening defeat by Australia in the Tri-Series and they scored an especially emphatic one. Finn’s career-best 5 for 33, and 4 for 18 from James Anderson, hustled India out for just 153 in 39.3 overs.
England then wasted no time racing past that total with 22.3 overs and nine wickets to spare, thanks to an unbroken stand of 131 between Ian Bell (88 not out) and James Taylor (56 not out).
Morgan will be heartened to see that pair back in form, after they had lasted only three balls and failed to score a run between them against Australia in Sydney. But it was Finn’s success which was perhaps the most encouraging.
“The team performance was outstanding,” Morgan said. “If nothing else over the last 12 months, we’ve put together some outstanding individual performances – and today was no different with Steve Finn.”
The tall fast bowler, who had such a miserable time during England’s descent to an Ashes whitewash last winter, discomforted India throughout with extra bounce.
Morgan added of his Middlesex team-mate: “He found some rhythm early and managed to take advantage of that steep bounce he gets. He’s come a long way over the last two years... for him to produce performances like the ones I’ve seen at Middlesex throughout his whole career makes me very proud.”
Finn had to leave England’s last tour of Australia early, deemed “unselectable” by former coach Ashley Giles at this same ground. He appeared anything but on this return. The typically modest 25-year-old said: “It’s nice to come here and take some wickets, and help us win a game.
“There’s a few bad memories of Australia from last year, but I’m glad we’ve won this game and I helped to do it,” Finn added.
Finn did not charge in with express pace but found a springy deck to his liking and repeatedly unsettled the India batsmen with bounce. His gradual return to form began in the ODI series at home to India last summer and in Sri Lanka before Christmas, after a near year-long hiatus in his international career while he worked on his action.
With the World Cup under a month away, he was perhaps at last clicking back into gear at the perfect time. Also, the fit again Anderson chimed in with four wickets in his first one-day international since September.
England move on on Wednesday to Hobart, where they face a rematch with the Australia side who dismantled them at the SCG last week. Steve Smith will captain Australia on Friday, a game David Warner misses with a hamstring injury.
With regular captain Michael Clarke out injured, Smith took over the Test side against India and excelled in the series. George Bailey was retained as Clarke’s one-day stand-in for this series but he has been suspended for the game in Hobart for Australia’s slow over rates.Reuse content