Team Buttler 141 for 4 (Root 45*, S Curran 45*) beat Team Morgan 139 for 9 (Moeen 41, Stone 3-12) by six wickets
Olly Stone gave England's selectors a nudge by taking three top-order wickets in an intra-squad T20 warm-up match at Paarl, before Sam Curran and Joe Root's rapid fifth-wicket stand sealed a comfortable victory for Team Buttler against Team Morgan.
Stone, the 27-year-old fast bowler, has not played limited-overs cricket for England since his debut series in Sri Lanka two years ago, but won a recall to the ODI squad for this tour on the back of some impression domestic form for Warwickshire. He is not part of the 15-man squad for the T20I series against South Africa which starts on Friday, but provided a reminder of his talents by removing Ben Stokes, Liam Livingstone and Jonny Bairstow in a two-over burst.
Moeen Ali's cautious 41 underpinned Team Morgan's total of 139 batting first, with Stokes and Bairstow both batting twice as wickets fell regularly. The run chase looked to be in some danger as Team Buttler lost their second, third and fourth wickets with the score on 50, but Curran and Root blitzed 91 runs in 50 balls between them to secure the win.
After Tom Banton was caught in the deep off Chris Jordan, Stone caused Stokes early problems. First, he miscued a short ball over mid-on, and he top-edged a pull to Sam Billings in the deep soon after. A chance off Bairstow on the leg-side boundary was spilled over the rope for six, but then Stone had Livingstone caught in the deep, and ripped through Bairstow to knock back his off stump for his third wicket in the space of only eight balls.
Tom Helm, a member of the reserves for both T20I and ODI series, struck twice in his second over. First, Eoin Morgan steered a short ball straight to third man, before Chris Woakes skied one straight down Jofra Archer's throat. Sam Curran dismissed brother Tom before some lusty blows from Moeen off Archer made the first-innings total look somewhat respectable on a slowish surface.
In the run chase, Reece Topley started with a wayward first over that went for 17, before Woakes had Buttler caught at short midwicket in his only over. Jason Roy scored freely, hitting five boundaries in his cameo of 28, before edging behind off Tom Curran immediately after Dawid Malan had played Mark Wood onto the base of his stumps. Curran then removed Billings, caught at wide slip, bringing Curran and Root together.
After keeping the scoreboard moving by nudging singles and the odd boundary for four overs, Curran then smashed Livingstone's spin for four, six, four in the space of three deliveries, and then went six, four, six off Moeen to put the game to bed as a contest. Root was then in on the act, smiting Livingstone for a four and a six, then clipping a two to take them past their 140-run target.
Team Buttler continued to bat on even after passing their target to give their players time in the middle under the floodlights, with Root - who is not in England's T20 plans - retiring out immediately after scoring the winning runs. It was the second time that Buttler's side had claimed the bragging rights in three days, following their convincing win in Saturday's 40-over warm-up.
While England are unlikely to have learned a huge amount from their evening's work, it was notable that Bairstow came in at No. 4 in the first innings. With Buttler and Roy set to open and Malan primed to continue at No. 3, that may be where he finds himself listed to bat on Friday night.
Sam Curran's blitz will also give England further temptation to pick him at No. 7 ahead of Moeen after an impressive IPL with the Chennai Super Kings, and while Root and Stone are unlikely to be added to the squad barring injury, they will have done their prospects of future inclusion no harm.
"Looking at those two teams, they were both so strong," Curran told the PA news agency. "Morgs and Jos were very clear that we should make this competitive because come Friday, South Africa are going to come hard. Any time you're out in the middle is great training. I think we'll be ready for Friday."