World Cup 2023: England’s title defence ended by Australia defeat

England’s World Cup defence is over after old rivals Australia added the final nail with a 33-run victory in Ahmedabad.

England was already all-but out, but a fifth miserable defeat in succession and sixth in total ended any hope of a freak turnaround.

They did well to bowl out Australia for 286 and showed some fight with the bat, but were still dismissed for 253.

Jonny Bairstow was caught down the leg side off the first ball of the chase and Joe Root followed for 13, leaving Ben Stokes to play a lone hand as he hinted at another special knock.

But, just as he began to move through the gears, Australia’s greatest tormentor in recent years was tamely caught off leg-spinner Adam Zampa for 64 from 90 balls.

Chris Woakes threatened the unlikely late on but his 32 only delayed the inevitable as England were dismissed in the penultimate over.

Defeat leaves England bottom of the table with two matches still to play – first against the Netherlands on Wednesday, before their tournament concludes against Pakistan on Saturday.

Their attention now turns to attempting to avoid the embarrassment of failing to qualify for the 2025 Champions Trophy by finishing outside the top eight in India.

Meanwhile, Australia are on the brink of securing their semi-final place and move on buoyed having ended the reign of their Ashes foes. (BBC)