Starc stars as Australia hold England to 145-6 in 3rd T20

Southampton (United Kingdom) (AFP)


Mitchell Starc led a disciplined bowling display as Australia held a revamped England to 145-6 in the third Twenty20 international at Southampton on Tuesday.

Fast bowler Starc took 1-19 from his maximum four overs, with leg-spinner Adam Zampa returning fine figures of 2-34.

Jonny Bairstow, with 55, was the only England batsman to pass 30.

But England, already 2-0 up in a three-match series, were without captain Eoin Morgan (dislocated finger) and fellow star batsman Jos Buttler, absent for personal reasons after making a match-winning 77 not out in a six-wicket victory on Sunday.

England, sent into bat on a used pitch, saw Tom Banton -- opening in place of Buttler -- caught behind for just two following a loose drive off Josh Hazlewood, one of three changes to Australia's side.

They were 53-2 when the in-form Dawid Malan holed out for 21 off Zampa.

Bairstow, who struggled early on, struck left-arm spinner Ashton Agar and Zampa for two huge sixes.

But Zampa had his second wicket when Sam Billings, recalled in the absence of Buttler and Morgan, miscued a reverse sweep that was well caught by Australia captain Aaron Finch at slip.

Stand-in England captain Moeen Ali cleverly uppercut a Hazlewood short ball for four before Bairstow completed a 41-ball fifty with a superb straight six off Zampa.

However, Bairstow was out soon afterwards when he miscued a pull off Agar, with the bowler making good ground to take the catch.

Moeen made an attractive 23 before he hoisted Starc to deep midwicket where Steve Smith, fearful of touching the boundary rope and conceding a six, threw the ball up into the infield to complete a well-judged catch.

But with the recalled Joe Denly (29 not out) cutting a couple of boundaries, England took 16 runs off Kane Richardson in the 18th over.