3rd T20I (N), Southampton, September 08, 2020, Australia tour of England
(19.3/20 ov, T:146) 146/5

Australia won by 5 wickets (with 3 balls remaining)

Player Of The Match
39* (36)
Player Of The Series
121 runs
Full commentary

9.45pm: From rapt to wrapped, that's the T20Is done with in England's summer of Covid. Three more ODIs to come, of course, starting on Friday. But for now, from myself, Al and our scorer Chandan, it's cheerio. Thanks as always for your comments. Bye!

9.35pm: Time for the presentations, starting with Man of the Match Mitchell Marsh: "Rapt, six months is a long time without playing cricket, nice to get opportunity and contribute today. Practice set us up well, outplayed in the first two but nice to finish off the series. [Comeback?] Like it to be a bit easier, but it was crunch time, got a bit of luck, just tried to capitalise. Grown up on the WACA, I do like pace on. We've got a great squad, we're all working well together, just focused on coming in and doing my job for the team."

Australia captain Aaron Finch: "We know where we messed up in first game, we know where we could improve. We played good cricket but couldn't finish it off, but tonight Mitch and Ashton got us over the line. Always areas to improve, middle overs against spin, knocking it around with the field back. Thought we played some good cricket throughout, nice when you keep it close when not at your best but disappointed to lose series. Looking for combinations and structuring the team, just about guys taking opportunities and doing well. Been a great learning curve after a long lay-off. [ODIs?] Great rivalry, looking forward to getting back into it, area s we can improve and look to change around, Luxury of being 2-3 years out from WC, time to plan it out, get to where you want to be. T20 we're a bit more settled."

England captain Moeen Ali: "Very proud moment when Morgy told me, it was an amazing experience. Sadly we didn't win but showed good fight. Thought it was a slow start, wicket wasn't easy and we played a lot of dot balls in the middle, which is a bit unlike us. Would have been nice to have 15 more runs. Poor in the field, take those chances and we would have won. Generally we weren't great in the field and didn't back up the bowlers. [Buttler Man of Series] World class player, great leader in the side. He's changed our way of playing, brings so much to the team, his experience in the changing room is amazing."

9.25pm: Mitchell Marsh finishes the job, which is not necessarily a phrase you expected to hear coming into the series. Australia did well to recover from that spell when Adil Rashid claimed three wickets in 11 balls, at 100 for 5 you could easily see them throwing away another winning position. It was a borderline farcical finish, but Australia got it done eventually, aided and abetted by England in the field - Marsh, remember, could have been caught twice in his first seven balls. It's always going to be tough defending 145 in T20, but even more so if you aren't completely on it

Here's Matt Roller with the view from the ground: Quite fitting for that to end with a throw that went wide - blaming fielding for a loss is the oldest trick in the book to mask poor performances elsewhere but England were really shoddy tonight

Jordan to Marsh, 1 run

full on the stumps, 88mph and Marsh digs it out to mid-off, tip and run and the throw is wayward with Marsh short! But that will do, Australia win by five wickets - and they'll take the No. 1 ranking home with them

"Super over, anyone?" gurgles Joynul

Jordan to Marsh, no run

flung full outside off, 88mph/141kph and Marsh mistimes this into the ground to cover... another dot!

Jordan to Marsh, no run

pitched up on the stumps and dinked to midwicket

Okaaay, so no Archer to finish. Jordan continues, one run needed

end of over 198 runs
AUS: 145/5CRR: 7.63 RRR: 1.00
Mitchell Marsh38 (33)
Ashton Agar16 (13)
Tom Curran 4-0-23-1
Chris Jordan 2-0-18-0
Tom Curran to Marsh, 1 run

fullish in the channel and Marsh steers one more carefully to mid-off, who's on his heels... scores are level but it will go down to the final over

"England should have stuck with spin." Another over from Moeen could have been interesting, Rich

Tom Curran to Marsh, no run

pitched full, cutter on middle and leg and Marsh sends it straight to midwicket

Tom Curran to Agar, 1 run

slower-ball bouncer, Agar waits for it and paddles around the corner to fine leg

Tom Curran to Agar, FOUR runs

full outside off, 84mph and drilled down the ground for four! Beats the dive of Archer at mid-off... and that might mean he doesn't have to bowl again, Australia almost home and hosed now

Tom Curran to Marsh, 1 run

full length, pace off in the channel, steered calmly through the covers by Marsh

"ESPN Predictor is at 96%. You mean there's still a 4% chance Australia won't collapse?" snickers Bob Bell

Tom Curran to Agar, 1 run

back-of-the-hand slowie, Agar pulls in the air through midwicket, just one to the man in the deep

Curran to deliver the penultimate over, Archer held back

end of over 186 runs
AUS: 137/5CRR: 7.61 RRR: 4.50
Mitchell Marsh36 (30)
Ashton Agar10 (10)
Chris Jordan 2-0-18-0
Tom Curran 3-0-15-1
Jordan to Marsh, 2 runs

slower again, Marsh pulls into the ground towards midwicket, ricochets through and they'll get two again! Wood stuck out an arm and only succeeded in deflecting it into space

Jordan to Agar, 1 run

nudged off his hip, mid-on swoops, tight at the non-striker's end as Malan turns and fires in a throw... misses!

Jordan to Marsh, 1 run

full and straight, 88mph/141kph but hie's equal to this, punched down the ground to long-on

Jordan to Marsh, no run

pitched up, 84mph/135kph in the corridor and Marsh plinks this to cover, won't get one

Here's Isaac Marshall: "Win predictors always seem to go too far in the direction of the favourites. Remember when England needing around 100 from 10 at four down was 2% against Pakistan? No way do they only win that 2/100. Triple that probably." ESPN Predictor is at 96% in Australia's favour, for what it's worth

Jordan to Agar, 1 run

full and wide and swatted through cover point to the boundary rider

Jordan to Marsh, 1 run

length in the channel, slower ball and Marsh miscues it into the turf towards point, scampers one

Chris Jordan replaces Wood. Archer still has one up his sleeve...

end of over 175 runs
AUS: 131/5CRR: 7.70 RRR: 5.00
Ashton Agar8 (8)
Mitchell Marsh32 (26)
Tom Curran 3-0-15-1
Mark Wood 4-0-38-1
Tom Curran to Agar, no run

fullish from round the wicket, driven straight to midwicket - just five from the over, but Australia are edging closer

Tom Curran to Agar, no run

fired down the leg side, flicks the pad, I think, on its way through... England appeal for a catch, but get a dot

"England blew it, then Australia blew it, now England have blown it again," gurgles Big Bill. "So much huffing and puffing!"

Tom Curran to Marsh, 1 run

pace off in the channel outside off, Marsh taps it down into the covers for one more

Tom Curran to Marsh, 2 runs

dug in short, just 71mph and Marsh has to check his pull, swung away behind square for a couple more

Tom Curran to Agar, 1 run

round the wicket, pace off and Agar works it around the corner for one

"England now have a reason to drop Malan," chortles Muhammad Zaid. Because he *dropped* Marsh (twice), geddit??

Tom Curran to Marsh, 1 run

slower ball, skipping up around Marsh's hip, fended away through backward square leg

Four overs to go, 20 runs needed. Tom Curran back on