Live Commentary: England vs. Australia - First Twenty20 International - as it happened

Live text commentary of the first Twenty20 International between England and Australia in Southampton.

England hosted Australia at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton as the two-match Twenty20 series started on Thursday evening.

Australia were asked to bat first and their innings was dominated by Aaron Finch, who struck a T20I-record 156 from just 63 balls to guide the tourists to an imposing 248-6.

England needed a special performance to record an unlikely victory and despite an impressive knock from Joe Root (90*), the hosts fell 39 runs short of their target as Australia took the lead in the series.

Read below to find out how the drama unfolded on a memorable evening at the Ageas Oval.

6.00pmGood evening! That was just far too long to wait without seeing England face Australia. The two sides meet again tonight in Southampton and I think we an expect some fireworks in the first T20.

6.02pmThe Ashes have been secured, so it's time for a new challenge for England. Stuart Broad leads a team with plenty of different faces, while George Bailey takes control of the Australians who will be looking to restore some pride in the white ball game.

6.04pmBREAKING NEWS: England win the toss and Broad confirms that his side will field first. Full team news will follow shortly.

6.05pmAUSTRALIA: Warner, Finch, Watson, Marsh, Bailey, Maxwell, Wade, Faulkner, Johnson, Hazlewood, Ahmed

6.06pmENGLAND: Hales, Lumb, Wright, Root, Morgan, Bopara, Buttler, Broad, Finn, Briggs, Dernbach

6.07pmI told you we'd see some new faces. England have surprisingly decided against picking Michael Carberry, while Danny Briggs is selected as the spin option ahead of James Tredwell.

6.09pmSpinner Fawad Ahmed makes his debut for Australia. Glenn Maxwell, Shaun Marsh and Matthew Wade can all excite the fans in this format.

6.11pmSteven Finn needs to impress tonight, he usually finds his form with the white ball. Jade Dernbach still has his doubters and I'm not sure how many more chances he will get.

6.12pmBroad tells Sky Sports: "We have some good hitters in the side and it's been a consistent squad for a while now. We enjoy playing together. It's always a massive honour to captain my country and hopefully we can win and put on a good performance for the crowd."

6.14pmBailey, also speaking to Sky Sports at the toss: "We were going to have a bat anyway, it's a beautiful wicket. I used to play here for Hampshire and hopefully the crowd remember that. It's exciting to have Fawad Ahmed in the team and hopefully he enjoys the opportunity."

6.17pmAaron Finch, one of the stars of the Indian Premier League with Pune Warriors, will open the batting with David Warner tonight. It could be interesting to see how early Broad turns to spin if those to make an early impact.

6.20pmSo, Ahmed is the next spinner off the conveyor belt. Is he the man to replace Warne? There's certainly a lot of expectation but I'm sure he'd have been included in the Ashes series had he impressed earlier in the summer.

6.22pmBroad will be desperate to record a victory tonight as he takes on the captaincy duties. England want to improve in this format and there's no better way to do it than to beat the old enemy.

6.24pmPlay is just over five minutes away. Australia have plenty of firepower in their lineup, so England need to bowl well under the lights. The pitch has already been used today for England women's Ashes triumph earlier on.

6.26pmThe players are making their way out to the middle now alongside the umpires. It's filling up nicely inside the ground and I think the Southampton crowd could be in for a cracker tonight.

6.29pmThe pleasantries have been made and the players have shook hands. Now that's all over with, it's time for some cricket. Finch and Warner open for Australia. Finn will bowl the first over.

AUS 10-0Finn hits a good length with his first delivery but the next ball hits Warner on the hip and trickles away for a couple of leg-byes. The seamer beats Warner for pace with one that just nips back slightly. Warner scoops the ball into the air and picks up a single to Dernbach at fine-leg. Wow! Finch shows the Southampton crowd what he's all about when he sits back to launch Finn into the stands on the leg-side for a huge six off his first ball. Finch ends the over by collecting a single to mid-off. Entertaining stuff already.

AUS 11-0Broad begins the second over with the ball in hand. Finch sneaks a single to mid-on and takes a painful blow to the thigh when Dernbach throws unnecessarily.


AUS 11-1It's a comical dismissal for Warner. An attempted heave out of the ground goes horribly wrong and Warner's bat slips out of his hand. Just to rub salt in the wounds, the ball is skied into the air and Buttler takes the catch. It's Marsh who comes in at three.

AUS 16-1Close! Broad takes the slip out for Finch, who breathes a sigh of relief when an edge races past Buttler and to the rope. A single to deep mid-wicket brings Marsh on strike. No runs on offer for the new batsman. Six runs and a wicket from the over.

AUS 29-1Finn drifts down the leg-side and he's punished for a wide. Finch shuffles across his crease and flicks the ball behind square on the leg-side for four. Excellent stuff from Finch as he lofts a fuller delivery over mid-on for four more. Shot! Finch picks the slower ball brilliantly and executes an elegant shot over mid-wicket to pick up four. Finn ends the over with two dot balls. Finch 25* Marsh 0*

AUS 39-1Marsh gets off the mark by guiding a single through third-man. Finch nudges the ball off his hip and despite some good fielding from Lumb, the batsman collects three. Broad beats Marsh's bat with a very good cutter. Marsh once again opens the bat, this time to earn two to Lumb at third-man. A wider delivery is cut past Morgan at point for four more to make it another good Australian over.

AUS 49-1Root fields well in the deep on the leg-side to restrict Finch to a single at the start of Finn's new over. Marsh uses a bit of extra bounce to tuck the ball off the hip for one. Superb from Root once again in the deep as he stops an ugly heave from Finch reach the rope. Finch is clearly annoyed by two dot balls, so he rocks back to hammer the final ball over square-leg for six. Great batting. Just one more powerplay over left.

AUS 58-1Dernbach comes on for his first bowl. He needs to deliver in an England shirt. Marsh nudges the second ball off his pads for one. Finn does superbly at short third-man to block Finch's late cut and restrict Australia to a single. Marsh pushes a run to mid-off. Finch does well to keep out a good slower ball from the tricky bowler. Amazing from Finch. The opener steps away to give himself room and almost falls over while lofting a six over cover. Dernbach can't believe it. Finch 44* Marsh 10*

AUS 71-1Broad turns to spin for the first time as Briggs comes into the attack. The left-arm spinner is tucked into the leg-side for a single by Marsh. Finch continues to target the rope and he adds four more with the latest of cut shots. A shorter ball is hammered to Lumb in the deep for one. Marsh decides it's his turn to join in as he lofts six over long-on. One more single makes it 13 from the over. It's been very good for Australia so far. England need a wicket.

AUS 86-1Bopara comes into the attack as England search for a breakthrough. The medium pacer starts with a wider ball, which is cut past point by Marsh for four. A quick single is then taken on the off-side. HALF-CENTURY! Finch reaches his 50 from 26 balls in style as he smashes Bopara straight down the ground for a massive six. It just gets better from Finch, who steps away to drill the ball over extra cover for four more. Top, top batting on show. Finch 59* Marsh 23*

AUS 95-1Marsh skips down the pitch to nudge Briggs to long-on for one. Finch drives a single to long-off. Another run is collected down the ground before Wright slides across the ground at backward point to restrict a cutting Finch to just one. Marsh adds another but a good over is ruined when Lumb allows the ball to slide underneath him at long-off and travel to the rope.

AUS 122-1It's Root's turn to have a go with the ball. Marsh picks up a single off the spinner's first ball. Shots! Finch couldn't care less who the bowler is as he takes Australia past 100 with a six over long-on. Wow, we're seeing something special from Finch and he amazes us again with a huge maximum straight over Root's head. Is that enough? No, it certainly isn't. Finch punishes a shorter ball by sending six more runs over mid-wicket. Root goes fuller but even that doesn't stop Finch drilling four more through extra cover. The spinner then catches the edge but he can't stop the momentum Finch has and the opener collects four more. Finch is 91* from 36 balls!

AUS 125-1Marsh is more than happy to give the strike to his partner by pushing Briggs for a single. A wide is followed by a slightly miscued shot to long-on by Finch for one.


AUS 125-2England definitely needed that. Marsh eyes the boundary but a top edge allows Lumb to run in from long-on and collect a catch. Mind you, Watson coming to the crease won't exactly ease the pressure.

AUS 128-2Finch advances down the pitch and nudges the ball into the leg-side for two. Briggs fires in a quicker delivery, which Finch nudges away for one more. Six from the 11th over.

AUS 141-2Finch pushes the returning Dernbach into the off-side for one. Watson guides the ball past slip for a couple of runs through third-man, with Finn doing well to prevent the boundary. A late cut for one brings Finch on strike. Is Finch concentrating on the century? The opener collects another single to move to 97. Dernbach goes too full to Watson, who happily drives the ball through extra cover for four. Four more. Watson hammers the ball through Dernbach's legs for another boundary. Excellent cricket. Finch 97* Watson 11*

AUS 145-2Wright is into the attack for the first time. The crowd cheer when they think the bowler has taken a return catch, but the ball did bounce. A couple of singles are picked up in the middle of the over. Watson is desperate to drive through extra cover but a miscued shot only brings one to long-on. Finch edges the ball but Dernbach fields well to keep the batsman on 99. Great over from Wright.

AUS 157-2Broad brings himself back on for a third over. Watson nudges a single into the leg-side. CENTURY! How else would Finch reach his hundred? Broad fires in a short delivery but a top edge is enough to take the ball over the rope at fine-leg for six. Superb batting from Finch, who scores the first international T20 century in England. It's been excellent to watch. A single hands the strike to Watson, who collects four past Buttler off the toe of the bat. 12 runs from the 14th over.

AUS 180-2Finch drills the ball through mid-wicket for two at the start of Wright's new over. Any hard hats available inside the ground? Finch is in the mood to entertain the locals as he lofts six over mid-wicket before hammering a short delivery over square-leg for another maximum. You won't see much better T20 batting than this from Finch. Watson matches his partner's effort by sitting deep in his crease to club six more down the ground. Lumb fields impressively at long-off to restrict Watson to two from the final ball of the over. Finch 121* Watson 26*

AUS 199-2I can't believe what I'm watching. Finch sets a new record for the highest score in T20 internationals when he steps back to loft Broad over cover for ANOTHER six. A single is followed by six more when Watson stands tall to crunch the ball over long-on. The pressure is clearly on England's skipper when he delivers a juicy full-toss, which is correctly fired through point for four. Two more singles makes it 19 from the over. England still have four more overs to bowl. Incredible.

AUS 222-2Briggs comes back on for his fourth over. Finch takes Australia past 200 in just the 17th over with four runs straight back past the bowler. The opener has Morgan interested in the deep on the leg-side but it doesn't matter as the ball creeps over the rope for six more. Finch then hits his 13th six of the innings when Briggs strays onto the pads. 150! Is 13 sixes enough? Of course it isn't. Finch clears the rope again on the leg-side to pile even more misery on England. One more single is added. Finch 152* Watson 37*

AUS 226-2Dernbach is back for a new spell. I'm sure he's really looking forward to this. Finch drills four more down the ground. That almost seems like a good result after 13 maximums.


AUS 226-3Everyone inside the ground applauds one of the most amazing things you will see on a cricket field. Finch departs for 156 from just 63 balls. Incredible night for the young man.

AUS 227-3Maxwell is the new batsman and he begins with a single to cover.


AUS 227-4Brilliant from Dernbach! Watson is completely bamboozled by the slower ball and the stumps are punished for the second time in the over. Good comeback, but it looks like it might be too late. Bailey in next.

AUS 228-4Bailey pushes a single to long-off. Maxwell swings, and misses, the final ball of the over. Two overs left in the innings.


AUS 228-5Finn begins his final over with a wicket as he gets Bailey trapped lbw when the Aussie captain shuffles across the crease. Easy decision for the umpire. Wade in next for the tourists.

AUS 242-5Finn beats Wade's outside edge by pushing the ball across the left-handed batsman. A couple of dot balls are followed by a boundary when Wade pulls a short delivery through fine-leg for four. Shot! Wade sits deep in his crease to launch Finn over long-on for six. The bowler is left frustrated when the ball drops short of a fielder in the deep and Wade picks up four more. One over left.


AUS 242-6Excellent bowling. Fast and full from Dernbach does the trick as he knocks back Maxwell's off-stump to claim his third wicket.

AUS 248-6Faulkner is the new batsman and he begins his innings with a single. Wade gives himself some room but can only squeeze one into the off-side. Faulkner lofts a slower delivery over mid-off for a couple more. The final ball of the innings is pushed down the ground for two. Just six from the final over but that doesn't even begin to tell the story. Wade 15* Faulkner 5*

AUS 248-6That was one of the most unbelievable things I've watched in cricket. Finch rightly steals the headlines with an extraordinary 156 from 63 balls. Australia are big, big favourites. England need a ridiculous 249 from their 20 overs for victory.

8.02pmIf England are going to somehow win this game, they'll need to do something amazing. Can Hales, Lumb or Wright match the standards set by Finch in Southampton? Surely not, right? England's reply begins in a few minutes.

8.04pmLet's all spare a thought for Joe Root. He bowled just one over but conceded 27 runs from six balls. Dernbach did impress with figures of 3-34 from his four overs. The players are back out in the middle.

8.07pmHales and Lumb are back out in the middle. It will be Faulkner who bowls the first over. England need 249 runs to win. Good luck guys!

8.10pmAustralia look like they've changed their minds. It will be England's old friend, Mitchell Johnson, who opens the bowling.

ENG 17-0Hales starts the innings by lofting a no-ball over extra cover for a couple. It's a free hit but Lumb can't make contact as Johnson beats the batsman with some extra pace and bounce. Johnson gifts another extra to England when he delivers a leg-side wide. Lumb enjoys some luck when a thick edge sails over slip for four. The England fans are finally cheering as Johnson delivers another wide, this time on the off-side. Lumb clips a fuller delivery over square-leg for four more. Shot! Lumb times the ball perfectly to drive four through the covers. Great start for England but there's a long, long way to go.

ENG 26-0Josh Hazlewood, the 22-year-old seamer, opens the bowling with Johnson. Hales gets off the mark with two through third-man. A wild heave results in a dot-ball when Hales gets his timing wrong. The Nottinghamshire ace pulls a shorter delivery into the leg-side for one. Brilliant! Lumb ruins a good over by launching six runs over Hazlewood's head. Lumb 20* Hales 3*

ENG 33-0Great batting from Hales as he stands tall to cut Johnson past point for four early in the over. The batsman takes a big risk by sneaking a single to Faulkner, who can't hit the stumps from cover. Lumb does well to dig out a good yorker from Australia's quickest bowler. Excellent fielding from Marsh in the deep as he keeps an awkwardly bouncing ball from reaching the rope at mid-wicket.


ENG 33-1Lumb's fluent innings comes to an end when he's trapped in front while swinging across the line. Easy decision for the umpire. It's Wright's turn to try something special.


ENG 33-2Disaster for England. Hales heads back in after miscuing his shot straight into the air, with Wade doing just enough to run in front of square on the leg-side and take a diving catch.

ENG 37-2Two wickets in two deliveries are followed by Wright crunching his first ball through the covers for four.


ENG 37-3Australia are convinced they have Wright caught behind and so is the umpires. Wright looks surprised by the decision but he must depart. England have lost three wickets in four balls. Root is the new batsman.

ENG 42-3Hazlweood strays down the leg-side and is punished for a wide. Ouch! Root has cut his lip and I promise you, it wasn't David Warner. The batsman is surprised by some extra bounce and is left slightly shocked when the ball breaks his grill. A bit of treatment takes place in the middle before Root confirms that he's fine to continue. The final ball of the over is whipped through mid-wicket for four. Great shot from Root.

ENG 42-3Johnson delivers a beauty to Eoin Morgan, who misses his first delivery outside off-stump. Even better from Johnson to nip one past the outside edge a ball later.


ENG 42-4It's all going wrong for England out there. Morgan goes after a wide one but can only pick out Maxwell, who takes a good catch at cover-point.

ENG 42-4Ravi Bopara is the new arrival and he's greeted by three very good dot balls from Johnson. The seamer completes a wicket maiden.

ENG 54-4Root pushes Hazlewood to to mid-on for one. A fumble from Marsh at cover allows Bopara to get off the mark. Root takes advantage of a shorter ball to earn four with a pull over mid-wicket. The Yorkshire ace sits deep in his crease to earn two more behind square on the leg-side. Shot! Root hammers a wider delivery past point for four more at the end of the over.

ENG 64-4Ahmed comes into the attack for the first time in Australian colours. Bopara helps a leg-side delivery on its way to collect four through fine-leg. A sweep brings a single, before a Root reverse-sweep earns another run. Bopara's thick edge allows him to get off strike and Root picks the gap well on the leg-side to pick up two more. One more single makes it 10 from the over.

ENG 75-4Watson is thrown the ball to signal the start of a new spell. Root works the ball through square-leg for a couple. A good slower delivery fools Root, who misses the wider one. Shot! Root stands as tall as possible to pull through mid-wicket for four. The Test opener makes it two boundaries in a row when he beats Finch at deep square-leg. A mistake by Bailey allows Root to sneak through for a single. Root 30* Bopara 7*

ENG 88-4Ahmed thinks he might have Root trapped lbw but the batsman gets a bit of bat on the ball to reverse sweep for four. A nudge through mid-wicket brings two more. Root plays a more conventional sweep and, after a quick replay, it appears that Marsh's effort in the deep was unsuccessful. Four runs is the end result. England run very well in the over to collect 13. Root 41* Bopara 9*

ENG 98-4Faulkner begins a new spell by attempting the yorker but Root flicks the ball away to earn two. A pull for one brings Bopara on strike. Superb from the Essex man as he lofts a full-toss down the ground for four. Bopara collects one to short third-man by opening the face of his bat. Two more singles added. England need 151 runs from 10 overs.

ENG 110-4Bopara beats the fielder at cover to pick up two with a well-timed drive. A sweep off Ahmed's leg-spinner brings another run. Root advances down the pitch to steal a quick single. Close! Wade thinks he might have Bopara stumped off a wide. The batsman is very, very lucky that the stumps were taken off before he raised his foot for the second time. Good running from Bopara to collect two with a clip into the leg-side off the next ball. The batsman then skips down the pitch to punch four down the ground. England end the over by sneaking another quick single. Root 46* Bopara 25*

ENG 115-4Watson returns to the attack. Bopara takes another risky single and he survives when Hazlewood's throw just misses the stumps. A nudge off the hip brings a run to fine-leg. Bopara picks out the fielder in the deep with a pull and only earns one. Root repeats the trick to collect another single. Watson ends a good over with two decent fuller deliveries, conceding just one run.

ENG 120-4Bopara heaves Faulkner into the leg-side for a couple. A bouncer is pulled behind square for two more. Close! Bopara chips the ball just short of Warner, who then attempts to run out Root but just misses.

ENG 125-4Drama! Bopara thinks he might be gone when Warner does hit the stumps. However, a replay suggests that even though the stumps were hit before Bopara made his ground, the bails were not dislodged until after the bat the bad crossed the line. Incredible piece of luck for Bopara. 50! Root reaches his half-century from 29 balls when he lofts four over mid-wicket. Excellent innings from the Yorkshire ace.

ENG 137-4Shot! Bopara finds the middle of the bat to smash a big six over long-on. A drilled shot to the same area brings two more. Get out of the way, Watson! Bopara drills the ball straight past the bowler's head for four more.


ENG 137-5Bopara's entertaining cameo comes to an end when he miscues a pull shot and Warner takes a simple catch on the off-side. Buttler is the new batsman. England still need 112 from 38 balls.

ENG 137-5Buttler is completely beaten when Watson strikes him in the helmet with a slower bouncer. Six overs left in the innings.

ENG 145-5Ahmed is pulled behind square by Root for one at the start of a new over. Buttler is gifted his first two runs when Bailey fumbles the ball at cover. The Somerset batsman slices four past backward point before sneaking a single on the leg-side. England need 104 from five overs.

ENG 158-5Buttler collects a single at the start of Hazlewood's new over. Root crunches a shorter delivery through mid-wicket for four. A thick inside edge brings Root a single. Shot! Buttler gives himself enough room to hammer the ball over the bowler's head for a massive six. A single from the final delivery means Buttler will keep the strike.

ENG 175-5Johnson returns to the attack for his fourth over. Buttler opens the face of the bat to steer a single to point. Wow, Root steps back to loft the ball over point for a six with a brilliant piece of improvisation. Root continues to give himself room and this time he drives through extra cover for four. Bailey moves deep square-leg and Root takes advantage to pull four more. Johnson is punished for a front-foot no-ball and England are gifted a free hit. Root can't get enough bat on a fuller delivery to collect a run. One more single makes it 17 from the over. England need 74 from 18 balls. Root 73* Buttler 16*

ENG 181-5Root begins Faulkner's new over by picking up a single. Buttler drives firmly to long-off for one. Root walks across his crease but fails to make contact when targeting the fine-leg rope. A dance down the pitch brings one to long-on. Buttler flicks another run to fine-leg before Root earns two to deep mid-wicket. Two overs left.

ENG 195-5Watson's yorker is squeezed into the off-side for a single. Drop! Buttler goes for the reverse-ramp shot and picks out Ahmed, who fails to take the catch inside the circle at third-man. Watson cannot believe his luck when he's penalised for a wide off a bouncer. An unorthodox pull shot brings Root a couple. The same batsman punishes a full-toss to earn four through square-leg. Two more runs makes it 14 from the over. England may have lost the game but Root will be eyeing a century. Root 89* Buttler 19*

ENG 203-5Buttler drills Faulkner's full-toss to long-on for a couple. Shot! England are determined to end the match in style as Buttler takes the hosts past 200 with six over long-off.


ENG 203-6Great comeback from Faulkner to hit the stumps with a yokrer a ball after Buttler had launched six runs into the stands. Three balls left in the innings.

ENG 208-6Broad is the new batsman and the skipper punches his first delivery down the ground for four runs. The penultimate ball of the innings is a good bouncer but Broad sneaks through to get Root on strike.

ENG 209-6AUSTRALIA WIN BY 39 RUNS! Root picks up a run from the final ball of the match to end unbeaten on 90. It's the men in green and yellow who celebrate in Southampton though. An incredible innings of 156 from Aaron Finch has won this game for Australia. England just didn't have an answer for him.

9.49pmEngland lose by 39 but that certainly wasn't the worst effort chasing 249. One man has won this game. Finch, of course, is the man of the match.

9.51pm457 runs scored in 40 overs at the Ageas Bowl. Thanks for joining me on an incredible evening of T20 cricket. Join me on Saturday afternoon for the second match in this series. Goodnight.

England's Stuart Broad celebrates taking another wicket during the fourth Ashes Test with Australia on August 12, 2013
Read Next:
'Tsunami of abuse' awaits Broad in Australia
You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in with Facebook to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account