A new dawn
England’s return to white-ball cricket following their torrid 2015 Cricket World Cup campaign saw them host one of the world’s best sides in New Zealand.
The Black Caps comfortably beat England at the tournament in March but this series saw the hosts present their new, bold and aggressive style of play to the world.
They did this in some style in the very first ODI as they smashed their way to the highest ever ODI score by an England team, passing 400 for the first time.
Jason Roy made his ODI debut while there were recalls for Jonny Bairstow, Adil Rashid, Ben Stokes and Liam Plunkett, all of whom would go on to be regulars over the next four years.
7-1 v Sri Lanka and Pakistan
The series with New Zealand wasn’t to be a flash in the pan as England continued to play in their new style and found consistency with bat, ball and in selection.
Nothing epitomised this consistency more than in the summer of 2016, where they claimed a 3-0 series victory over Sri Lanka and a 4-1 series win over Pakistan.
The side were now posting scores of well over 300 with regularity and showing that no score was too big for them to chase, supported by a potent attack full of wicket-takers.
Champions Trophy setback
England’s consistency, form and aggressive brand of cricket saw them enter the 2017 Champions Trophy on home soil with the favourites tag.
They handled this well in the group stages, with comfortable wins over Bangladesh, New Zealand and Australia setting up a semi-final against Pakistan.
However, an elusive first Champions Trophy wasn’t to be as they fell to defeat in Cardiff. Despite the disappointment this setback only proved to refocus England and their determination who went on to lose just three of their next 13 matches.
Winning down under
Off the back of a heavy 2017-18 Ashes series defeat England bounced back in style as Eoin Morgan's ODI side recorded a 4-1 series win over Australia. Previously England had won only one ODI series down under in over 30 years.
Opener Roy had been dropped during the Champions Trophy but here showed his quality and power at the top of the order to hit the highest individual ODI score for England with 180 off 151 balls.
England carried the momentum from this series across the Tasman sea to defeat New Zealand and claim their 11th series win out of 14 since 2015.
The world record
England hammered their way to the highest ever ODI total at Trent Bridge against Pakistan in 2016. In 2018 against Australia though they went almost 40 runs better to smash their own record!
This was their fourth score of over 400 since the 2015 Cricket World Cup and their 481-4 record still stands today.
The incredible innings showcased the power, invention and consistency of a batting line-up that has cemented itself as the most feared in international cricket.
Fifteen of England’s top 20 scores have come since the 2015 Cricket World Cup and they have passed 300 the same number of times since March 2015 as in all ODI cricket before this date.
The clean sweep
India arrived in England in 2018 as the only side to not be beaten by England in an ODI series since the 2015 World Cup.
The three-match series was hotly contested between the world’s two best sides with England coming out on top – a fine century from Joe Root and the classic ‘bat drop’ celebration sealing the series win at Headingley.
This meant that England had now beaten all fellow international sides and come the end of the year they would have series wins home and away against Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and the West Indies to look back on.