Reece Topley is lethal against left-handers, Joe Root’s back in the groove and we still miss Ben Stokes… FIVE THINGS WE LEARNED from England thrashing Bangladesh
- England paceman Reece Topley took four wickets with his first 16 deliveries
- Joe Root was in the groove again in Dharamshala, scoring 82 from 68 balls
- Ben Stokes has missed first two games at the World Cup due to a hip injury
An outstanding century from Dawid Malan and Reece Topley’s eye-catching return put England’s World Cup defence back on track as they hammered Bangladesh by 137 runs.
The 2019 champions were bruised by a thumping loss to New Zealand in the tournament opener but banked a handsome win of their own to cap their visit to the outer ranges of the Himalayas.
Malan was the architect, rolling out a career-best 140 in 107 balls as he carried England to 364 for nine with a fourth century in his last nine innings.
Bangladesh lost their way entirely with the bat, ambling aimlessly to 227 all out and helping repair much of the previous damage to England’s net run-rate.
Mail Sport’s Lawrence Booth takes a look at five things we learned from the victory in Dharamshala.
England’s Reece Topley took four wickets with his first 16 deliveries against Bangladesh
Reece is lethal against lefties
Since 2015, England have rarely looked as toothless with the ball as they did against New Zealand’s Devon Conway and Rachin Ravindra, both left-handers.
Enter Reece Topley, whose natural movement takes the ball away from the lefties.
With his first 16 deliveries against Bangladesh he removed Tanzid Hasan, Najmul Hossain Shanto and Shakib Al Hasan.
Joe Root was in the groove again in Dharamshala, taking Bangladesh for 82 from 68
Root is back
A quiet end to the summer, in which Joe Root made six, nought, four and 29 against New Zealand in his first ODIs since July 2022, were no kind of build-up for the World Cup.
But he looked sharp in the first game against the New Zealanders and was in the groove again in Dharamshala, taking Bangladesh for 82 from 68.
Now he just needs others to hit out around him.
Keep the pedal to the metal
Twice now England’s innings has fallen away, when the 2019 model might have accelerated. Against New Zealand, 188 for four became 252 for nine.
Against Bangladesh, 296 for two led to a total of 364 for nine.
Both outcomes felt underwhelming and could have done with a late flurry from Liam Livingstone, who has so far contributed 20 off 22 balls and a golden duck.
Woakes must relocate rhythm
In the first over of New Zealand’s chase, Chris Woakes conceded 10. Then against Bangladesh, it was 12.
He simply looks short of a gallop, though Jos Buttler did well to keep him on after four expensive overs against the Bangladeshis: the wicket of Mehidy Hasan Miraz followed immediately.
Influential Ben Stokes has missed the first two games at the World Cup due to a hip injury
We still miss Stokes
Ben Stokes continues to make progress from the hip injury that ruled him out of the first two games.
But it’s unclear if he’ll be ready to face Afghanistan on Sunday, and repeated internal flights are not helping his body’s recovery.
The Afghanistan game is ideal preparation for next week’s showdown against South Africa.
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