Root fit to play in ODI series opener, Warner in doubt

Root expected to be fit for ODI opener

Root expected to be fit for ODI opener

Joe Root (91 not out) played a fine supporting role in a mammoth third-wicket partnership of 221 as England pulled off the highest ODI chase in Melbourne easily, comfortably overhauling their opponents' total of 304-8 with seven balls to spare. Australia 199 for 4 after 36 overs. After a 0-4 drubbing in the Test series, England will hope that a change in format will also bring some change in fortunes.

Marsh's wicket fell in the 38th over when Australia was 205-5 and the platform had been set for a substantial total. Stoinis smashed 60 in 40 balls while Paine contributed a useful 27 as the pair added 80 for the sixth wicket to help the hosts get past the 300-run mark.

Smith made it to double figures before being caught behind off a well-flighted delivery from legspinner Adil Rashid (2-73).

They found it hard facing Australia's pace attack during the Test series and while Josh Hazlewood will rest from the first game, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins will be going around, likely alongside debutant Jhye Richardson. The allrounders Marsh and Stoinis were handed the Nos.

This week the vice-captain, Jos Buttler, praised Bayliss for liberating England.

The 28-year-old, who was recovering from an ankle injury during the test series, took just seven balls to send down the second-fastest England delivery of the summer at 149.3km/h.

Warner is the latest player to be struck down by illness, joining teammates, as well as England captain, who have all been affected by stomach problems since the Boxing Day Test. "Also the best way to address it is to be on the front foot".

Smith, too, was quickly into stride against everyone other than Wood, but would slip up unexpectedly against the leg-spin variations of Rashid.

Liam Plunkett, England's most prolific ODI bowler of 2017, followed up by bowling Travis Head via a chop-on.

But as if to underline how this area had been recognised by Australia both in terms of selection and attitude, Finch and Marsh refused to panic, working the ball around patiently in recognition of the overs remaining, before signalling a phase of acceleration when Marsh hammered Moeen into the members enclosure beyond long on.

Rashid then clean-bowled Marsh with a sliding straight delivery. When he reached 75 he surpassed 3,000 ODI runs and he went on to a century from 112 balls, raising the milestone another six off Rashid, the third of his innings.

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