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England in trouble at T20 World Cup as loss to Australia dents Super 8 hopes



Defending champions England’s hopes of reaching the T20 World Cup Super 8s took a big dent as they slipped to a 36-run defeat to Australia in Barbados.

Jos Buttler’s side, batting for the first time in the tournament after rain prevented them from beginning a chase in the abandonment against Scotland on Tuesday, could muster only 165-6 having been set 202 to win, with Australia leg-spinner Adam Zampa bagging 2-28 and supported superbly by the seamers, including Pat Cummins (2-23).

Buttler (42 off 28) and opening partner Phil Salt (37 off 23) smoked 73 in seven overs but then fell to Zampa as Australia seized control and the dot balls built up, with Moeen Ali’s three sixes of Glenn Maxwell in the 14th over only a fleeting high at the backend.

Defeat is not terminal for England’s hopes of reaching the next stage but even victories over Oman on Thursday and Namibia on Saturday, both in Antigua, may not be enough with their chances of progression possibly coming down to net run-rate.

Australia posted 201-7 after being inserted, a total underpinned by a riotous opening stand of 70 in just 4.5 overs between David Warner (39 off 16) and Travis Head (34 off 18) as the left-handers ruthlessly targeted the short boundary.

The 2021 champions top Group B on four points, with their win in Bridgetown following a 39-run victory over Oman earlier this week, and they now hold the highest score in the 2024 tournament so far with their knock eclipsing the 197-3 Pakistan’s conquerors USA managed in their win over Canada in the opening game.

More to follow…

What’s next?

It’s a three-game day at the T20 World Cup on Sunday, headlined by the blockbuster showdown between India and Pakistan in New York from 3.30pm UK and Ireland time.

Co-hosts and two-time champions West Indies play tournament debutants Uganda in Providence, Guyana from 1.30am, while Oman vs Scotland rounds off the day, from 8pm in Antigua.

Scotland have made a promising start to the competition, racking up 90-0 from 10 overs against England before rain caused that clash to be abandoned and then beating Namibia by five wickets.

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