Four Englishmen entered the record books after crossing the 50-run mark in their World Cup opener against South Africa at The Oval in London yesterday.
Jason Roy (54), Joe Root (51), Eoin Morgan (57) and Ben Stokes (89) slammed half-centuries to take England to 311 for eight against the Proteas. Courtesy of this show, the four batsmen registered their name in the list of most half-centuries in an innings in the World Cup. This was the 13th such instance and first for England.
But England, who last year set a world record for the highest ODI total of 481-6 and have often blown teams away with the bat, were repeatedly pegged back.
The ball did not always come onto the bat and Root, speaking at the innings break, admitted: “We would’ve liked more, especially when you’re setting a total but that was not your typical one-day pitch in England. It did grip a bit and there is plenty in the pitch for the bowlers.
“You never felt in, you always felt the bowlers were in the game.”
Morgan added: “The favourites tag sits with us comfortably. It’s been a collective drive. I much prefer going in as favourites.”