Southampton   -   England fell to a 12-run defeat by Australia in a thrilling World Cup warm-up match in Southampton after Steve Smith’s first century since being banned for his part in the ball-tampering scandal.

Smith hit 116 off 102 balls in an impressively composed innings to steer his side to 297-9.

James Vince and Jos Buttler struck fine fifties to seemingly put England on course for victory only for Australia to regularly peg the hosts back.

Needing 15 off the last over, England lost their two final wickets to end a disappointing and disjointed chase.

England, who also sustained a series of injury worries, face Afghanistan in another warm-up on Monday before facing South Africa in Thursday’s World Cup opener.

Defending champions Australia begin their campaign against Afghanistan on June 1 after a warm-up match with Sri Lanka on Monday.

Even in an unofficial match with relaxed rules - Australia named a team of 12 and England were able to bring in substitutes for injured players - the hosts were expected to comfortably chase down a target of under 300.

The pitch offered some variable bounce - openers Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow both caught after miscuing shots - while off-spinner Nathan Lyon was especially canny, but England will be frustrated to have fallen short, even if the result will likely not have much impact on their World Cup campaign.

Having to miss Hampshire’s One-Day Cup defeat by Somerset at Lord’s, Vince emulated England’s usual number three Joe Root with an innings of deft accumulation, clipping through mid-wicket and mid-on to accompany his trademark cover drives.

Buttler changed the tempo of the chase in the 27th over as he smacked Nathan Coulter-Nile for 24 off six balls, including two brilliant sixes down the ground and over square leg.

He surged to 52 off 30 balls, only to fall to the next delivery, tamely chipping Coulter-Nile to Usman Khawaja before Vince guided it straight to Lyon in the trap at short third man for 64.

Moeen Ali (22) fell slogging to leg-spinner Adam Zampa and Tom Curran was dismissed cheaply before Chris Woakes countered with 40 and Liam Plunkett struck 19.

But once both departed, Adil Rashid and Jofra Archer - who were both only batting due to injuries - had no chance, a clearly hampered Archer run out trying for two in the game’s final act.

A day after England were relieved to find Eoin Morgan’s small finger fracture will not keep him out of Thursday’s World Cup opener against South Africa, they had several injury concerns arise in Southampton:

Fast bowler Mark Wood is the only major worry, having felt discomfort in his left foot and going off, unable to finish his fourth over. England are awaiting results of a scan.

Substitute fielder Jofra Archer took a blow attempting to make a diving stop on the boundary but later returned to the field

Liam Dawson split the skin on his right ring finger and did not bat as a precaution

Chris Woakes played solely as a batsman to rest his long-standing knee issue and was only starting due to Morgan’s injury

Rashid’s existing shoulder injury prevented him from fielding, meaning 42-year-old assistant coach Paul Collingwood spent long periods in the field.

Root was also called into action despite not being due to play following the death of his grandfather two days ago.




D Warner c Bairstow b Plunkett 43

A Finch c Ali b Wood 14

S Marsh c Buttler b Plunkett 30

S Smith c & b Curran 116

U Khawaja st Buttler b Dawson 31

M Stoinis run out 13

A Carey c Curran b Plunkett 30

N Coulter-Nile b Plunkett 1

J Behrendorff not out 4

A Zampa run out 1

EXTRAS: (lb6, w8) 14

TOTAL: (9 wkts; 50 overs) 297

FOW: 1-19, 2-82, 3-108, 4-187, 5-224, 6-266, 7-283, 8-296, 9-297

BOWLING: M Wood 3.1-1-19-1, T Curran 10-1-54-1, B Stokes 8.5-0-45-0, M Ali 10-0-54-0, L Plunkett 9-0-69-4, L Dawson 9-0-50-1


J Roy c Lyon b Richardson 32

J Bairstow c Warner b Behrendorff 12

J Vince c Lyon b Behrendorff 64

B Stokes st Carey b Lyon 20

J Buttler c Khawaja b Coulter-Nile 52

M Ali c Richardson b Zampa 22

C Woakes run out 40

T Curran c Khawaja b Richardson 2

L Plunkett c sub b Stoinis 19

A Rashid not out 7

J Archer run out 1

EXTRAS: (b4, lb4, w6) 14

TOTAL: (all out, 49.3 overs) 285

FOW: 1-39, 2-65, 3-100, 4-171, 5-197, 6-239, 7-250, 8-275, 9-283, 10-285

BOWLING: J Behrendorff 8-1-43-2, N Coulter-Nile 6-0-61-1, A Zampa 10-0-54-1, K Richardson 9-0-51-2, N Lyon 10-0-37-1, M Stoinis 6.3-0-31-1

TOSS: England

UMPIRES: Marais Erasmus, Sundaram Ravi

TV UMPIRE: Joel Wilson