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England thrashed by 166 runs in their Ashes opener

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England made an inauspicious beginning to its Ashes Campaign by losing the One-day match against the PM’s XI by 166 runs! The Manuka Oval at the Australian Capital, Canberra saw the Prime Minister’s XI slaughter 347 runs at the loss of 5 wickets in the allotted 50 overs after they were put into bat by Freddie Flintoff. England in reply were skittled out for just 181 in 38.4 overs.

Opener Phil Jaques was the star with a 110-ball 112 which was studded with 9 fours and 2 sixes. But it was former Test Cricket Geoff Marsh’s son, Shaun Marsh who had taken the English bowlers to the cleaners with a 56-ball 78. Sajid Mahmood suffered terribly under the onslaught as he went for as many as 97 in the 9 overs he bowled! In England’s chase, there was hardly any performance to speak for except that of Andrew Strauss’s who had made a run-a-ball 67 with a dozen hits to the fence. Fast bowler Shaun Tait had picked up three big wickets for the homeside.

Brief Scores : Prime Minister’s XI 347/5 in 50 Ovs (Phil Jaques 112 Shaun Marsh 78 Travis Birt 40 Adam Voges 39 Craig White 30*, Ashley Giles 1/53 Andrew Flintoff 1/55) bt England XI 181 all out in 38.4 Ovs (Andrew Strauss 67 Paul Collingwood 35, Shaun Tait 3/21 Adam Ritchard 2/24 Craig White 2/32) by 166 runs.

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