In a thrilling contest in Pune, England broke their five-game losing streak against the Netherlands, emerging victorious by a convincing margin of 160 runs.
While the win came too late in England’s 2023 World Cup campaign, which had been marred by inconsistency, both teams still had a glimmer of hope to secure a berth in the Champions Trophy qualification.
England made a flying start to their innings, with Dawid Malan setting the tone with three boundaries against Logan van Beek in only the second over. Although Jonny Bairstow failed to make a significant impact, Malan continued his splendid form, reaching his fifty in just 36 balls.
The partnership between Malan and Joe Root had England in a strong position, but Root’s dismissal, attempting his signature ramp shot and being bowled by Van Beek, slowed their momentum. The score was 133 for two at that point, and England encountered further setbacks when Malan was run out.
Harry Brook, Jos Buttler, and Moeen Ali failed to make an impression, and England found themselves struggling at 192 for six with Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes at the crease. The duo then turned the tide with a remarkable 129-run partnership.
Stokes played a stellar knock, notching up his maiden ODI World Cup century in just 78 balls, while Woakes provided valuable support with an aggressive 51.
This partnership enabled England to amass 124 runs in the final 10 overs, setting a challenging target of 339 runs for the Netherlands.
The Netherlands’ chase began slowly, as they lost Max O’Dowd and Colin Ackermann cheaply and had a lackluster first powerplay.
Wesley Barresi and Sybrand Engelbrecht then stabilized the innings with a 54-run partnership, offering a glimmer of hope with some powerful strokes.
However, the wicket of Barresi halted their progress, and the score stood at 68 for three. Engelbrecht followed 22 runs later, and Bas de Leede’s dismissal further deepened the Netherlands’ woes, reducing them to 104 for five.
Scott Edwards and Teja Nidamanuru again sought to steady the Dutch innings, but once the skipper fell, the floodgates opened.
Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali wreaked havoc in the tail, each claiming three wickets. The Netherlands lost their last five wickets for just 16 runs, eventually being bowled out for 179 in the 38th over.
Although the win came too late for England to progress in the 2023 World Cup, it catapulted them to seventh place on the points table, pushing the Netherlands to the bottom.
England’s hopes now hinge on beating Pakistan in their final match in Kolkata to secure qualification for the Champions Trophy.
The victory also put an end to their losing streak against the Netherlands, offering a glimmer of redemption in an otherwise disappointing campaign.