England smash world record 444 to crush Pakistan
NOTTINGHAM, England (AP):
England smashed a world record-breaking 444-3 in an emphatic 169-run victory over Pakistan yesterday, taking an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match one-day international (ODI) series.
Opening batsman Alex Hales hit England's highest individual ODI score with 171 and Jos Buttler (90 not out) notched England's fastest ODI half-century off only 22 balls.
Joe Root (85) and captain Eoin Morgan (57 not out) also joined England's run rampage at Trent Bridge against some sloppy Pakistan bowling and fielding, with Wahab Riaz (0-110) going for the second worst-ever bowling figures in a limited overs international.
Pakistan's run chase was soon in trouble, with Chris Woakes (4-41) mopping up the top order.
Number 11 batsman Mohammad Amir made a rapid 58 off 28 balls and opening batsman Sharjeel Khan also scored 58 to give the total some respectability before Pakistan were bowled out for 275 in 42.4 overs.
"What a monumental knock from Alex Hales on his home ground, our innings was based around that, not to undermine Joe Root's part in that," Morgan said.
"The records are hugely important. We are not just a side that likes batting second. We showed lots of skill while batting, with the ball spinning and reverse swinging a bit," the skipper added.
Earlier, Hales struck 22 fours and four sixes in a 122-ball blitz at his home ground, beating Robin Smith's 23-year-old England record of an unbeaten 167 against Australia.
Together with Root, Hales added 248 runs off 190 balls as England bettered the previous ODI world record of 443-9, set by Sri Lanka against the Netherlands in 2006, when Buttler hit a four off the last ball.
Buttler and Morgan caned 161 runs off 72 balls in a fourth-wicket carnage, hitting a dozen sixes and 10 fours between them with a remarkable display of clean hitting.
None of the Pakistan seamers, or their premier spinner Yasir Shah (0-48 off six overs) was spared by England's batsmen after Morgan won the toss and opted to bat first on an ideal batting surface.
Hales showed plenty of aggression, but having completed his half-century off 55 deliveries, he got a reprieve when he was caught off Riaz's no-ball on 72. Captain Azhar Ali dropped Hales on 114 at short cover and the Nottinghamshire opener continued to dominate Pakistan's listless bowling.
"Exceptional innings from Alex Hales and Jos Buttler," Azhar said. "Our fielding, on a wicket like this, it needs to support the bowlers and that didn't happen. It's hard to control the flow of runs on a wicket like this if you don't pick up wickets."