White stars for Australia in T20 opener
OLD TRAFFORD: Cameron White led Australia to 145 for four against England in the first Twenty20 international at Old Trafford here on Sunday.
White, dropped on 12 by debutant Joe Denly, made 55 and shared a fourth-wicket stand of 78 with Michael Clarke, Australia's captain in the absence of the resting Ricky Ponting.
The duo came together after England captain Paul Collingwood took two wickets in three balls to leave Australia struggling at 54 for three in the ninth over.
Victoria's White, who didn't feature in the Ashes series that England clinched 2-1 at the Oval last week, completed a maiden fifty at this level off 33 balls when he launched paceman Ryan Sidebottom for his third six.
He was eventually out when a lofted cover-drive off Ashes hero Stuart Broad was well caught by a leaping Collingwood in the penultimate over.
Clarke finished on 17 not out and Adam Voges was unbeaten on 11.
Collingwood - captain in the absence of Test skipper Andrew Strauss who has opted out of Twenty20 internationals - led from the front with his medium pace in the first meeting between England and Australia since the Ashes.
He took two wickets for 20 runs from his maximum four overs after winning the toss and making Australia bat in overcast conditions.
Collingwood struck first when David Warner was lbw on the sweep for 33, made off 26 balls with three fours.
Replays suggested the left-hander was a touch unlucky, the ball pitching outside leg-stump.
But there was no debate two balls later when David Hussey went down the pitch to drive only to be stumped for nought by Matt Prior.
Australia's 54 for three could have become 69 for four in the 12th over when White, on 12, was dropped by a diving Denly at backward point off local hero James Anderson.
Soon afterwards White struck the first six of the innings, pulling Broad in front of square.
White, finding his range, then lofted off-spinner Graeme Swann for six in the 16th over.
Thanks mainly to White, Australia scored 42 runs in the last five overs.
S. Watson c Bopara b Broad 10D. Warner lbw b Collingwood 33M. Clarke not out 27D. Hussey st Prior b Collingwood 0 C. White c Collingwood b Broad 55A. Voges not out 11Extras (lb3, w6) 9Total (4 wkts, 20 overs) 145
Did not bat: T Paine, M Johnson, B Lee, N Hauritz, D Nannes
Fall of wickets: 1-35, 2-54, 3-54, 4-132
Anderson 4-0-28-0 Sidebottom 4-0-31-0 Broad 4-0-33-2Collingwood 4-0-20-2 Wright 1-0-6-0 Swann 3-0-24-0
England: Joe Denly, Ravi Bopara, Jonathan Trott, Matt Prior (wkt), Paul Collingwood (capt), Owais Shah, Luke Wright, Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, Ryan Sidebottom, James Anderson
Umpires: Ian Gould (ENG) and Richard Kettleborough (ENG)
TV umpire: Peter Hartley (ENG)
Match referee: Ranjan Madugalle (SRI)