England have qualified for Friday evening’s final of the INAS Tri-Series T20 competition after chasing down 89 to beat Australia by seven wickets with 6.1 overs to spare at Chester Boughton Hall.
Despite a brief wobble with the bat, the hosts completed their second win of the day having earlier chased 100 to beat South Africa, in which fast bowler Tayler Young took four wickets.
England's bowlers impressed against Australia and it needed Lachlan MacRae to strike 17 off Young's final over for the visitors to reach a modest 88/6. Ronnie Jackson and Dan Bowser, with his left-arm spin, claimed two wickets apiece.
England fell to 17/3 inside four overs of their chase, but captain Chris Edwards was key in steering his team home with an unbeaten 38 off 36 balls securing him the man-of-the-match award in the process.
He shared an unbroken 72 in 10.3 overs for the fourth wicket with Jonny Gale, who finished 22 not out.
“Today’s been pretty awesome. Everything’s kind of clicked for us. We bowled, fielded and batted really well in both games.”
“Today’s been pretty awesome,” said Bowser. “Everything’s kind of clicked for us. We bowled, fielded and batted really well in both games.
“There was a bit of panic early in the chase, but there were a few guys in who don’t really open and haven’t had too much batting time.
“We can now looking forward to hopefully beating South Africa again tomorrow and, whoever we play in the final, do the same to them. It should be good fun.”
Earlier in the day, England dominated the Proteas in the first game of the double-header to set one foot in Friday’s final.
The win was set up by a polished display as Surrey fast bowler Young claimed 4-21 from his four overs in bowling the visitors out for 99.
South Africa were bowled out with the last ball of their 20 overs having been invited to bat, with the 22-year-old taking three wickets in the over, including top-scorer Jan Makololo for 30.
Openers Bowser and unbeaten Gale then raced towards their target and shared 81 for the first wicket. Bowser top-scored with 46 off 28 and Gale finished with 38 off 21.
“It’s been a good tournament, and I couldn’t be happier with how I’ve bowled over the last two weeks.”
Young, from Chessington, said: “It’s been a good tournament, and I couldn’t be happier with how I’ve bowled over the last two weeks. I’m really pleased.
“We were actually going to have a bat first, but it was a good bowling performance. We kept things very tight.
“Everyone bowled to the plan and contributed with wickets. Thankfully we got the rewards.
“I had a few wides in that last over, but I changed to around the wicket and it worked.”