Alex Hales hit 84 from 51 balls to help England beat Australia by eight runs in the first T20 international.
Hales and captain Jos Buttler added 132 runs in only 11.2 overs, scoring most of England’s 208-6 total. Nathan Ellis (3-20) was the best bowler for the hosts.
With help from Mitchell Marsh (36) and Marcus Stoinis (35) and a score of 73 from 44 balls, David Warner kept Australia in the game.
However, it placed too much pressure on Australia’s bottom order in Perth when Warner was the sixth man out to Mark Wood (3-34) with three overs remaining, and England ended the game.
Sam Curran, a left-arm seamer who held his composure to end with 2-35, had Matthew Wade (21), who Australia required off the penultimate over, caught at midwicket and then bowled Ellis for a duck.
Buttler even believed he had enough runs to work with to handle a potentially contentious event diplomatically late in Australia’s bid to chase down a record T20 total against England.
In the 17th over, when the Australian batter top-edged the ball into his helmet, Wade seemed to block Wood as he attempted for a return catch, but Buttler chose not to raise the issue of obstruction of the field.
With the proviso that Australia’s attack lacked its frontline bowlers since Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, and Adam Zampa did not appear, England’s batting domination was unavoidable.
However, it was terrific how Buttler’s bowlers kept their composure and made crucial catches to defend the target as they sought to gain momentum before the World Cup.
In particular, Wood cemented his role as a vital partnership breaker at critical points in favorable batting situations. At the same time, Curran performed his variations to demonstrate that he is a competitive Chris Jordan replacement towards the end.