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21-Jan-2018 11:29:00 GMT
Aus v Eng, 3rd ODI, SCG

Buttler ton leads England to series win

England 6 for 302 (Buttler 100*, Woakes 53*) beat Australia 6 for 286 (Finch 62, Stoinis 56, Marsh 55) by 16 runs

Sydney: England have won their one-day series against Australia with two games to spare after Jos Buttler's century led the tourists to a 16-run win at Sydney Cricket Ground on Sunday.

Buttler scored 100 not out, reaching his ton from the final ball of the innings as England posted 6 for 302.

The tourists were 6-189 on a slow pitch but Buttler and Chris Woakes (53 not out) hit 102 off the last 10 overs.

Aaron Finch made 62 in reply, while Mitch Marsh hit 55, but Australia could never get ahead of the required rate.

Liam Plunkett departed with a hamstring injury after just eight deliveries, but England's attack bowled accurately enough and took wickets at crucial times to ensure the hosts fell short, with Marcus Stoinis dismissed in the final over for a thrilling 56.

Eoin Morgan's side have an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series, with the fourth ODI at Adelaide on Friday.

With the top order all making errors to leave England 4-107 after 22.2 overs, Eoin Morgan and Buttler were forced to steadily accumulate and try to stay together to the 40-over mark before going on the attack.

Morgan could not last, nicking a cross-batted shot behind to Tim Paine off Josh Hazlewood for 41, before the out-of-form Moeen Ali dragged a wild swipe onto his stumps to depart for six, having already been reprieved by Cameron White's poor attempt at a catch.

But England still had Buttler. Steering the tourists to 200 off 40 overs, the keeper then reached his half century off a relatively tame 52 balls. The next 50 took him just 31, despite facing a talented attack on a sluggish pitch.

Hitting mighty sixes and carving boundaries around the ground, adding in an exquisite ramp shot for four off Cummins, Buttler went ballistic in the closing stage.

He was dropped on 70 by Adam Zampa and successfully reviewed when given out lbw on 97, allowing him the chance to scamper the two he need from the final ball of the innings to bring up his fifth ODI century - his slowest at 83 balls.

Buttler was only slightly the more active partner in his century stand with Woakes, who hit five boundaries and two sixes in a superb unbeaten 53 off 36 balls.

After a crucial 39 not out in the second ODI, Woakes again proved how vital he is at number eight, bringing up his 50 with a tremendous pull shot for six off Starc as he and Buttler smashed 76 runs in the final six overs.

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