Michael Atherton asked Eoin Morgan at the post-match presentation whether, having smashed multiple records in an enterprising win over New Zealand at Edgbaston, there was a pang of regret that his side didn’t play that way at the World Cup.
Should this new-look ODI side continue with performances of that nature for an extended period, however, it won’t be long before that question twists to look at the excitement of the next global tournament in four years’ time.
A whirlwind batting performance of 408-9 in 50 overs, the kind English cricket fans only ever experienced from the receiving end, promotes plenty of excitement for the future.
The rope-clearing and ramp-flicking aside, though, here’s three other aspects of the 210-run win that get the pulse racing:
Underneath Joe Root’s counter-attacking ton, Jos Buttler’s blindly aggressive 129 and Adil Rashid’s late-order hitting, the skipper returned to somewhere near his best.
Many wondered how James Taylor, picked to captain the England side against Ireland in Morgan’s absence, was suddenly banished to drinks-carrying as soon as the Middlesex man returned.
The rage can’t have lasted long though, as Morgan built a quick-fire 121-run partnership with Joe Root, in which he contributed 50 in just 46 balls.
The knock contained three sixes, two of which were typical shots of power down the ground, a sign that an innings of real note isn’t far away.
Six years after the Yorkshire all-rounder did not bat and went wicketless against South Africa in his last ODI appearance, Rashid returned to the international fold to confirm everything his many fans on the county circuit say about him.
His 69 runs undoubtedly fed confidence to his bowling and a return of 4-55 off his 10 overs capped a fine, googly-filled, performance from the 27-year-old that heaps more pressure on Moeen Ali for his place in the side.
The absence of Anderson and Broad
It may not sound like a particularly positive notion, but the fact that England bowled New Zealand out without their heavily-relied-upon pair of fast bowlers is a real blessing.
Steven Finn led the attack with four wickets, while Liam Plunkett, Chris Jordan and Ben Stokes all bowled above 85 miles-an-hour.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
Fancy a flutter? Sign up today to claim up to £25 in free bets.