Jason Roy hit a magnificent century as England got their Cricket World Cup campaign back on the upward trajectory with a 106-run win over Bangladesh in Cardiff.
England suffered an unexpected defeat against Pakistan earlier in the week but raised their game against Bangladesh, with Roy starring with an impressive 153 off 121 balls.
He was responsible for five of England’s 14 sixes, including three in a row immediately before his exit, setting the scene for a daunting total of 386 for six.
As well as being a new ground record for Sophia Gardens it also represented England’s best ever score in the competition, eclipsing 2011’s previous high by 48.
Bangladesh never threatened to go close in reply, during which both Jofra Archer and Mark Wood touched 95mph, but Shakib-al-Hasan’s classy 121 spared them a rout.
Archer topped and tailed the innings to finish with three for 29, with Wood claiming two and Ben Stokes chipping in with three of his own.
Moeen Ali’s off-spin was certainly not missed, the all-rounder somewhat surprisingly dropped in favour of the returning Liam Plunkett, with England’s pace barrage rolling Bangladesh for 280 in the penultimate over.
The only real concern of the day concerned Jos Buttler, who hurt his right hip during a fine knock of 64 and played no part in the second innings as Jonny Bairstow took over wicketkeeping duties.
After winning the toss Bangladesh predictably opened with Shakib’s left-arm spin. He was hoping to replicate the the success of Imran Tahir and Shadab Khan against England’s openers but instead burned through five chanceless overs. Roy and Bairstow were cautious at first but quickly caught up, peppering the boundary en route to a century stand inside 15 overs.
Roy was the primary aggressor, driving straight and hard and pulling with authority, but Bairstow departed for 51 when Mashrafe Mortaza found a leading edge. Roy never looked likely to do the same, hammering anything short and driving sweetly.
There was an inevitability about his hundred and a peculiarity to its arrival. A misfield in the deep nudged him over the line but his celebrations were delayed after he raced towards the non-striker’s end and barrelled into umpire Joel Wilson, who tumbled to the turf.
Having helped him to his feet, Roy finally had time to toast the moment. With a ninth international ton in the bank he upped the ante, tearing into the spinners as he moved from 100 to 150 in 28 balls. For a moment he even threatened to join the ‘six sixes’ club, nailing Mehidy Hasan for three successive maximums to start the 35th over.
A fourth was clearly on his mind when he swung hard at the next delivery, but this time it looped to cover.
Buttler picked up the baton with his usual flair, thrashing four more sixes, but his efforts came at a cost. Having cleared long-off with a mighty back-foot baseball swing he hobbled for the remainder of his innings and did not re-emerge.
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Joe Root and Stokes missed out but a 45-run flurry from Chris Woakes and Plunkett ensured there would be no respite for a weary attack.
Few in attendance expected Bangladesh to scale their target, but an unforgiving burst from Archer forced them to the wall. He started with two immaculate maiden overs, produced extreme pace without breaking sweat and forced Bairstow into respectful retreat – the Test keeper standing closer to the boundary than the stumps.
The highlight came when he responded to a drop at slip by spearing one past Soumya Sarkar’s outside edge and flicking the off bail, a picturesque dismissal completed when the ball sailed over the ropes on the full.
Tamim Iqbal survived his spell but emerged from it with a scrambled mind. No other explanation would account for his decision to walk down the pitch towards Wood, tangling himself in the process and fending straight to cover.
If England were sensing an early finish, Shakib had designs of his own. He joined Mushfiqur Rahim to put on 106 for the third wicket, the pair working the gaps diligently but never grappling with a run-rate that was spiralling ever upwards.
Plunkett eventually parted them, Mushfiqur well taken by Roy at point, and Mohammad Mithun lasted only two balls before nicking a teaser from Adil Rashid.
By the time Shakib was yorked by Stokes the result was long settled, but England pushed to finish the job. Stokes struck twice more, Wood removed Mahmudullah and Archer proved far too fast for Mehidy and Mustafizur Rahman.