England overcame a sluggish start to post 272-5 in the first one-day international at Lord's on Friday, despite never quite dominating Australia's bowlers.
Eoin Morgan hit a swashbuckling 89 not out from 63 balls with four sixes and five fours, while Jonathan Trott hit 54, with three fours from 70 balls.
Clint McKay was the pick of Australia's bowlers with figures of 1-43, after the tourists won the toss and chose to field in overcast and damp conditions.
England captain Alastair Cook admitted he would have bowled given the choice and the openers found life difficult early on.
Ian Bell was on 3 when he was given out caught behind off McKay, but the batsman successfully referred umpire Richard Kettleborough's decision. Replays showed the ball had brushed Bell's trousers.
After three separate rain delays, which kept the players off the field for exactly an hour in total, conditions improved, allowing Bell and Cook to put on 74 for the first wicket, before the former was lbw to Brett Lee for 41 at the end of the 17th over.
Bell didn't realise he'd got the faintest inside edge on the ball and walked without asking for a referral.
Cook was dropped by wicketkeeper Matthew Wade from the very next delivery from Shane Watson, but he fell for 40, caught behind off Pat Cummins to the final ball of the 21st over.
Ravi Bopara was hit on the back of the helmet by Cummins early in his knock and made just 15 when he edged McKay to Australia captain Michael Clarke at first slip in the 29th over.
Australia then wasted its referral when Jonathan Trott was given not out either stumped or caught behind to Xavier Doherty in the 32nd over.
Cummins dropped a diffficult return catch off Trott and Eoin Morgan hit the first six of the innings with the final ball of the same over, the 38th, by smashing Cummins back over his head.
Trott brought up his 50, from 65 balls, by glancing Lee to backward point for two, but he was bowled by Doherty with the first ball of the 41st.
Morgan reached his 50, from 45 balls, when he nudged Cummins to square leg, then hit Lee for successive sixes from the last two balls of the 47th over as England tried to accelerate.
The next ball that Morgan faced, from Watson, also went for six, but Watson did well to limit England to eight off the final over and had Craig Kieswetter caught for 25 by David Warner off the final ball of the innings.