Fourth ODI: England finally win after setting Australia record run chase

Ninety-two days after touching down in Perth for the Ashes series, England have finally won a game of cricket against Australia.

They've gone to every major city and back again before returning to their first stop on a horror tour to at long last taste success in the fourth one-day international at the WACA, albeit against a severely under-strength Australian team.

Not even a century to opener Aaron Finch - his second of the series - could deny England of a result many predicted they would enjoy more often than their opponents throughout the summer.

Alastair Cook's men were just one more defeat away from earning the tag as the worst English cricket team to grace Australian shores in a 137-year history between the two countries.

But the 57 run victory - thanks largely to a rapid fire 71 off 43 balls from Jos Buttler at the end of the innings - ensured England would avoid a record 10th consecutive loss against Australia across all formats of the game.

For the first time this summer, England dictated terms from ball one right through until the end of the day, dismissing Australia for 259 in reply to their 8-316 batting first.

Finch hit eight fours and four sixes in a damaging knock of 108 from 111 balls at the top of the order, but threw his wicket away when he guided a short ball from Tim Bresnan to Stuart Broad at third man.

With Michael Clarke, Brad Haddin and Shane Watson all rested, the Victorian offered the sole resistance in an innings where most batsmen failed to go on after making a solid start to their respective innings.

But it was the devastating display of power-hitting from England wicketkeeper-batsman Buttler that was the difference between the two teams.

Buttler's powerful knock pushed England past 300 for just the third time in their last 60 one-day internationals, leaving Australia needing the highest successful run chase at the WACA to claim victory.

The 23-year-old Buttler, who on the eve of the match admitted England couldn't afford to score anything less than 300 if they were any chance of breaking their duck down under, hit four sixes and six fours to put England into a commanding position despite the middle order failing to capitalise on a blistering start from the top order.

The last time England posted 300 was in the second game of this series at the Gabba, however a brilliant innings from James Faulkner denied the visitors what should have been their first victory on Australian soil this summer.

But there would be no heroics from the men in green this time around, struggling to replicate the power hitting of the England lower order at the end of their innings.

England finished the stronger of the two teams, but they also started the better of the two racing to 73 off the first 10 overs to surpass their previous highest score of 53 after the 10 over mark.

Alastair Cook scored 44 off 43 balls, while Ben Stokes, the shining light of a black summer for English cricket, chimed in with a handy 70 run contribution.

Outside of Finch, none of the Australians managed to get past 26, with Glenn Maxwell delivering the second highest score of the innings.

Faulkner, who picked up two wickets in the final over of the innings, finished with the best figures of the Australian claiming (4-67 off 10 overs).

James Pattinson, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Dan Christian and Maxwell all bagged a wicket each, while Mitchell Johnson was unable to make an impact finishing with 0-72 from his 10 overs.

Ben Stokes finished 4-39 off nine for England, with Tim Bresnan snaring 3-45 off 8.4 overs and Stuart Broad bagging 2-56 off 10.

The story Fourth ODI: England finally win after setting Australia record run chase first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.

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