England vs Ireland 2nd ODI: Root’s all-round performance helps England win series 2-0

Root excelled with both the bat and ball

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Joe Root struck a brilliant 73 and took three wickets as England defeated Ireland by 85 runs in the second and final ODI at Lord’s on Sunday.

Root was well supported by captain Eoin Morgan and fellow batsman Jonny Bairstow as they scored 76 and 72 respectively.

Being put in to bat first, England got off to a solid start before opener Alex Hales was clean bowled by Tim Murtagh for 32.

Jason fell shortly after for 20, but Root and Morgan stabilised the innings with a 140-run partnership, during which both batsmen sailed past their half-centuries.

With England in cruise control, Ireland were in desperate need of a wicket, and it was Peter Chase who answered his team’s call as he removed Root for 73, which came off 73 balls and included eight boundaries.

Morgan went on to make 76 off 79 deliveries, which included five boundaries and two sixes, before he was sent packing by Barry McCarthy.

Morgan scored his 32nd ODI fifty

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Despite wicketkeeper Sam Billings departing not long after, Bairstow and Adil Rashid steadied the ship for England with an 88-run partnership, during which Bairstow brought up his fifty.

Rashid ended up falling for 39, but Bairstow proceeded to finish unbeaten on 72 off 44 balls, which included seven boundaries and three sixes, as England posted 328/6 off their 50 overs.

Bairstow raises his bat after bringing up his fourth ODI fifty

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Chase and McCarthy picked up two wickets apiece, while Murtagh and George Dockrell chipped in with one wicket each.

Chasing 329 to win, Ireland made a strong start to their innings courtesy of Paul Stirling, who dominated the majority of his 68-run partnership with Ed Joyce.

However, just as Stirling was two runs shy of his half-century, he was caught behind off the bowling of Jake Ball.

Following Stirling’s dismissal, Ireland began to lose wickets at regular intervals thanks to Root, but captain William Porterfield did his best to keep them in the hunt.

However, with the other batsmen not offering much support, Porterfield did everything in his power to keep England at bay, but he was ultimately clean bowled by Mark Wood for 82, which came off 83 balls and included six boundaries and a six.

Porterfield’s 14th half-century in ODI cricket was not enough to see his side to victory

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Once Porterfield was gone, Liam Plunkett tore through Ireland’s lower order and they ended up being bowled out for 243.

Root and Plunkett took three wickets apiece, while Wood got two and Ball and Rashid claimed one wicket each.

Porterfield was disappointed to have lost the match, and said: “I thought we were much improved today. We put a lot of things right. We kept going even through that big partnership. With the bat, just a couple of wickets behind the game.

“Lot of credit Barry McCarthy for coming in for a big game. We did a lot of hard work, not making it easy for anyone to start, but credit to Bairstow and Rashid at the end. But the lads put their hand up. After Friday it would have been easy to hide away, but we took a step forward. Even when we were six down.”

Morgan was delighted to win the series 2-0, and said: “Today presented different challenges, cloud cover this morning and the openers did really well. We should have been more clinical, one of us should have got a big score, but Jonny and Adil led us home really well.

“[Jonny] is another selection headache, but it’s a great position to be in. The quality of cricket coming up is extremely good and that’s what we want. Great to see Woody back, getting more overs under his belt.”

Root was named Man of the Match, and said: “If we’ve got guys who can bowl a few overs then it’s great. Nice to be able to do that in last few days. It’s been nice to get a few runs, a good stepping stone towards the Champions Trophy. The South Africa series will be really good for us to be under some pressure.”

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