26th over: England 141-3 (Root 39, Morgan 68) Target 215 Single to Morgan through midwicket, then Root pulls two which cements the hunnert partnership. Back to that point about the field placings, it makes even less sense given Australia have at no point been able to stop the flow of runs. Six milked from the over.
25th over: England 135-3 (Root 35, Morgan 66) Target 215 Before today, Morgan had scored just one fifty in the last 17 matches, so he’d’ve took this, as Ryan Giggs would say. He’s looked very comfy out there, and illustrates the point by whamming a short, wide one through cover – that was not such bright bowling from Richardson. And nor is that! Another short, wide one, this time outside leg, and Morgan hooks, what looked like an under-edge sending it very fine for four. Morgan is in the groove now, and hauls Root through for a rapid two to long leg, his dive saving him from being run out, and this will be over pretty soon unless something insane happens.
“I think I am missing something,” worries Simon Leyland. “What is a ‘hunnert’ – please tell me it is an example of Grauniad speak!”
Ha ha, I’m afraid not – it’s how Bubbles from the Wire says hundred.
24th over: England 117-3 (Root 34, Morgan 49) Target 215 Agar returns, and Morgan greets him by raising his fifty via cut to the point fence. That’s the runs for the over sorted and more, but England still add three singles, scoring at 5.16 when the required rate is 3.50.
“England’s target is 215, yet the field is pretty much the same as it would be were they chasing 415,” tweets Gary Naylor. “That can’t be right can it? Yet all teams seem to do this.”
It’s a bit odd, I agree – I guess Australia are looking to get wickets from errors, but there’s just nothing prompting England to make them,
at 1.36pm EDT
23rd over: England 117-3 (Root 34, Morgan 49) Target 215 Richardson returns and tries a short one, so Morgan tries a hook. But the ball is too close to his body and he misses – there’s an appeal for caught behind, a loud one, and they consider reviewing when the finger remains fisted, but opt not too – correctly, snicko shows. Richardson then tries a slower full toss and Morgan checks his shot, doing well to see it float between fielders and to the fence. A single follows off the final delivery, and this is all very easy for your Englands.