PERTH: Glenn Maxwell produced a stellar all-round performance and Mitchell Johnson returned to terrorise England as Australia clinched the one-day tri-series with an emphatic 112-run victory over their Ashes rivals on Sunday.
Barely two weeks before the World Cup, the hosts proved their batting depth to recover from 60-4 and post 278-8 with Maxwell (95) and Mitchell Marsh (60) rebuilding the innings before James Faulkner´s late assault.
A rejuvenated Johnson, rested in the group games, then mowed down England top order on a bouncy WACA track, dismissing James Taylor, Moeen Ali and captain Eoin Morgan, who left a ball and watched in horror as it pegged back his off-stump.
Maxwell followed up his batting heroics with bowling figures of 4-46 to go with the sharp catch he took to send back Taylor as England collapsed for 166 in 39.1 overs.
Ravi Bopara top scored for the visitors but his 33 runs were of little significance in an abject batting collapse.
Put into bat, Australia were reeling at 60 for four in the 18th over but Maxwell found an able ally in Marsh and the duo added 141 runs in 23.2 overs to prop up the innings.
The hosts lost opener Aaron Finch even before they could open their account and David Warner became James Anderson´s second victim in the seventh over.
In-form Steve Smith, however, batted confidently until off-spinner Ali exhibited his newly-developed habit of claiming crucial breakthroughs.
Smith returned having contributed 40 of Australia´s 60 runs at that stage but the Maxwell-Marsh partnership allayed the fears of a batting capitulation with some aggressive cricket.
Maxwell displayed his wide array of shots — both conventional and cheeky — in a belligerent knock, bringing up his ninth fifty with a reverse paddle that raced to the boundary.
The right-hander hit four boundaries in a Chris Woakes over before falling to Stuart Broad in the next, while Marsh was run out soon after, paying the price for a late decision to go for a second run.
This was the third time Maxwell had fallen in the 90s but Faulkner continued the assault on the English bowlers by smashing four sixes, three in the same Woakes over and the other from the final delivery to bring up his fifty in just 24 balls.
Woakes bled 89 runs in his wicketless 10 overs, while Stuart Broad claimed 3-55. (Reuters)