Stuart Broad paid tribute to Aaron Finch's "incredible" century after England's 39-run defeat to Australia in the opening NatWest Twenty20 clash.
The Australia opener smashed the home attack all over the Ageas Bowl in Southampton, clubbing 14 sixes in his sensational 153 which set a new world record in international Twenty20 cricket.
Finch's 63-ball demolition led the tourists to a mammoth 248-6, and England did well to respond with 209-6, Joe Root cracking an entertaining, unbeaten 90 from 49 balls.
"We're disappointed to have lost the game but credit to Australia and how they batted," said England captain Broad.
"Finch was excellent. He tried most things, hit sixes and to hit 14 in an innings is quite incredible.
"Some times you hold your hands up and say you were outplayed - he hit his first ball for six and we knew it was going to be a tough ask."
Root's performance was encouraging on his Twenty20 debut for England following an inconsistent Ashes Test series, and Broad said: "It was his first international T20 and 90 was a great effort."
Root batted on after being left bloodied by a Josh Hazlewood delivery which hit him in the mouth.
"It makes his knock even better," Broad said. "He's got over an inch-long laceration inside his mouth, which is quite a nasty one.
"It's not the first blow he's had to his face, I'm sure he'll get over it."
Broad says England will take encouragement from the way they batted and added: "I'm very proud of the guys who showed up in our side and fell just short of our highest international score.
"It would have been very easy to be 100 all out there and the crowd would have gone home unhappy.
"There are certainly 11 disappointed English guys but the crowd have had a fantastic day, with 460-odd runs. We're disappointed we haven't won but it was a cracking game of Twenty20 cricket."
Broad's Australia counterpart George Bailey also saluted Finch's memorable innings and compared him to West Indies' hard-hitting opener Chris Gayle.
"It was pretty extraordinary," Bailey said. "I can only think of Chris Gayle in the Indian Premier League who has done that.
"We spoke to him about hitting sixes, telling him not to try and hit them 40 rows back. As it was, he hit them 40 rows back!"
Finch added: "It was one of those things, one of those days. The wicket was flat and it made it easier for stroke play. It was nice to get a few early and build on it.
"It was just one of those days where things hit the middle of the bat and things went my way."