England (3/1 Cricket World Cup 2023) have taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in their series in the Netherlands with a match to spare following a hard-fought six-wicket victory over the minnows in the second ODI.
Sunday’s match was nothing like the barnstorming run-scoring of Friday’s first game when England won by an enormous 232 runs in what was a record-breaking day of cricket.
The second ODI had threatened to be almost as one-sided after the Netherlands lost early wickets, but the hosts – who had won the toss – dug in to frustrate England.
Rain delayed the start of play with nine overs lost in each innings and for the second straight match, the Netherlands won the toss, although this time they opted to bat first, perhaps to avoid a repeat of Friday’s demolition.
Having fallen to 36-3 in the tenth over, the Netherlands dug in to stop the rot before they gradually took the game to England in a bid to post a competitive target.
Captain and wicketkeeper Scott Edwards once again led the counter-attack topping the scoring charts with 78, having finished unbeaten on 72 in the forlorn run-chase in the first ODI.
Bas de Leede (34), Teja Nidamanuru (28) and Logan van Beek (30) provided able support with the hosts posting 235-7 in their 41 overs.
Yorkshire team-mates David Willey and Yorkshire colleague Adil Rashid both finished with two wickets, while Moeen Ali and Brydon Carse took one apiece.
England stepped up to bat with a very manageable target and began well with Jason Roy faring better than his score of just one on Friday.
Having missed out on the run-fest in the first ODI, Roy responded with 13 fours and one six in making 73, while Phil Salt smashed 77 in an opening stand of 139 as England threatened to wrap the match up quickly.
However, the pair fell in quick succession as the Three Lions stuttered, with captain Eoin Morgan failing once again with a seven-ball duck, while Liam Livingstone (4) soon followed with England in a semblance of trouble at 178-4.
Dawid Malan and Moeen Ali weather the storm though with the former finishing unbeaten on 36 while Ali hit five fours and a six as he steered the side home, scoring 42 not out off 40 balls.
Despite his own failings, Morgan says he is very happy with how the series has gone.
“I’m delighted,” said the World Cup winning skipper. “With the ball, Brydon Carse came into the game and hit the series with plenty of pace and with something we haven’t seen before.
“And with the bat again Phil Salt contributed for the second time doing what he does. Jason Roy did well in his 100th cap.
“I think the strength in depth grows deeper and deeper. We keep on producing batters who are aggressive and willing to take the game on. The skill within that is picking the right side that wins you the game.”
The third ODI takes place on Wednesday at the same VRA Ground venue in Amstelveen.