Eoin Morgan ton sets up England win over South Africa in first ODI
England captain Eoin Morgan's fine century laid the platform for a 72-run win over South Africa in the day/night first one-day international at Headingley on Thursday.
Victory over the Proteas, the world's number-one ranked ODI side, gave England a morale boost just a week before they host the Champions Trophy tournament featuring the world's top eight 50-over sides and put them 1-0 up in this three-match series.
South Africa, set 340 to win, made steady progress while the experienced Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis shared a second-wicket stand of 112. But they both fell in quick succession to leave the Proteas 149 for three.
South Africa's innings never recovered and they were dismissed for 267 with five overs to spare.
Earlier, Morgan's 107 -- his 10th ODI hundred for England -- was the cornerstone of the hosts' 339 for six.
England had slumped to 198 for five but Morgan's sixth- wicket stand of 117 with fellow left-hander Moeen Ali, who made a dashing 77 not out on his return, turned the tide. Both batsmen struck five sixes apiece.
Ali, who ended England's innings with a six off Chris Morris, was named man-of-the-match after also taking two wickets with his off-spin.
"It was a pretty good day at the office for us. The partnerships we built, gave us the best opportunity to get a par score and beyond," Morgan said.
South Africa skipper AB De Villiers accepted his side had been well beaten, telling Sky Sports, "England played phenomenally well with the bat in hand. 'Morgs' really dominated with the hundred. We didn't bat well enough, we definitely should have come a lot closer. We lost Faf and Hash in close succession and that probably stopped us a little bit."
De Villiers, however, refused to read too much into this result ahead of the Champions Trophy.
"We all have a bit of pressure on us and we're all contenders to win that trophy," he said, adding that ‘they played better tonight and hopefully we'll win the next one’.