Buttler goes ballistic in England romp

England's Liam Livingstone

Jos Buttler was the star of the show as England (3/1 Cricket World Cup 2023 Outright) enjoyed a record-breaking win in the first one-day international against the Netherlands.

The white-ball superstar was one of three centurions for the Three Lions, the first time England (498-4) have seen three batters reach three figures in a one-day international, as they set up a gargantuan 499 for the hosts to chase down. Unsurprisingly, the Netherlands did not have the firepower to get anywhere near the target, ultimately dismissed for 266 to lose by a mammoth 232 runs.

The Netherlands might have been thinking of an all-together different result at the start of the day as they won the toss and put England in to bat, quickly celebrating the dismissal of Jason Roy with the score at 1-1 off 1.3 overs.

However, it was hardly the portent of things to come as Phil Salt blasted his way to a maiden century for England, scoring 122 off 93 balls, having shared a 222-run stand with Dawid Malan, whose own century meant he has now passed three figures in all formats of the game.

However, Buttler will be hogging the limelight after smashing England to a world record ODI score of 498-4, on the back of his second-fastest century – coming off just 47 balls – and his third ton in 50 or less balls.

The big-hitting keeper-batter also scored the joint-second fastest 150 ever, reaching the milestone off just 65 balls, as he finished unbeaten on 162 (70 balls), having clubbed 14 sixes and seven fours along the way.

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Unbelievably perhaps, Liam Livingstone stole a little of Buttler’s thunder towards the end as he smashed England’s fastest-ever 50, off just 17 balls, as he finished unbeaten on 66 (22 balls) with England narrowly missing out on becoming the first international side to hit the 500-run mark.

England managed to accelerate through their innings and racked up an astonishing 164 runs in the final 10 overs, another record, as they put the Netherlands bowlers to the sword.

Things may have been different had the hosts taken two chances offered up by Buttler, dropped when he was on 17 and 37, but the writing had long been on the wall when they strode out to bat.

Vikramjit Singh was one of the culprits but couldn’t make amends with the bat as he was first man out for 13 before Max O’Dowd (55) and Musa Ahmed (21) shared an 80-run partnership only to be dismissed in quick succession.

Others got starts without going after the unrealistic target but England kept chipping away with wickets to put a dampener on proceedings for the home fans, although Scott Edwards offered some resistance with a fluent half-century, ending the match unbeaten on 72.

David Willey, Reece Topley and Sam Curran took two wickets each, while Moeen Ali finished with 3-57 off his 10 overs to stand out as the pick of the bowlers.

The Amstelveen venue remains the same for Sunday’s second ODI but only time will tell if the rather one-sided result will be any different, although Roy and captain Eoin Morgan – who went for a first-ball duck – might just feel they have something to prove having missed out in the opener.

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Author: Lucille White