Team Buttler defeated Team Morgan by 50 runs in a warm-up match held at Newlands, Cape Town on Saturday. Electing to bat first after winning the toss, Team Buttler posted a competitive 255 runs in a 40 overs per side contest.
Dawid Malan opened the batting and scored 29 runs from 36 balls while Jason Roy was bowled out by Reece Topley, having played a short knock of 16 runs. Skipper Jos Buttler and all-rounder Sam Curran couldn’t deliver, perishing for 16 and 14 respectively.
England’s Test skipper Joe Root led the way for Team Buttler with an impressive half-century. Coming into bat at his customary number three position, Root hit a knock of 77 runs. He hit seven fours and a six in his innings before perishing to Mark Wood.
Sam Billings came in and also made an impressive half-century to push Team Buttler towards a competitive total. Billings’ knock featured three fours and two sixes. He was eventually dismissed for a quick 52 from 44 balls when he caught by Moeen Ali off Ben Stokes’ delivery.
For Team Morgan, Tom Curran was the standout bowler with a 4 for 25 spell. Pacer Mark Wood picked up three wickets, but was expensive, conceding 48 runs in his seven overs. Topley and Stokes claimed a wicket each while the rest of the bowlers went wicketless. Chris Woakes was particularly expensive, giving away 42 runs in his six overs.
While responding to Team Buttler’s total 255 runs, Team Morgan never got into any position to win the game during the chase. The talented Tom Banton perished early, falling for 10 off 15 balls when he was caught behind off Jofra Archer’s delivery.
Archer carried on from where he left off in the IPL, producing a stupendous bowling performance of 1 for 11 in four overs, which included a maiden over.
The big names in Team Morgan’s batting department - Jonny Bairstow (17), Stokes (10) and skipper Eoin Morgan (20) - all fell cheaply as Team Buttler reduced the opposition to 90 for 5.
There was a combative fightback from the lower order, with Woakes smashing 55 runs from 41 balls, and Tom Curran contributing 31 from 34. However, it was not enough to stop Team Buttler from clinching the contest as Team Morgan folded for 205 runs in 35.5 overs.
Lewis Gregory was the chief wicket-taker for Team Buttler with figures of 3 for 18. Chris Jordan claimed 2 for 35 while Root, Sam Curran, Olly Stone and Adil Rashid chipped in with one scalp each.
The match was part of a warm-up for England's tour of South Africa. The Proteas and England will feature in three T20Is and as many ODIs from November 27th to December 9th.