30-March-2015 ~ Page No.

Australia crush New Zealand to win WC title
Michael Clarke dedicates 5th title to Phillip Hughes
New Zealand: 183/10 (45)
Australia : 186/3 (33.1)
------------------Player of the Tournament :
Mitchell Starc
Man of the Match : James
Australia on Sunday clinched
the coveted ICC Cricket World
Cup for the fifth time, thrashing
New Zealand by seven wickets
to provide a perfect farewell gift
to skipper Michael Clarke, who
played a key role with a 74-run
knock in his final ODI
Australia fast bowler
Mitchell Starc was named the
player of the tournament.
The 25-year-old left-arm
quick finished with 22 wickets in the tournament, tied with
New Zealand left-arm seamer
Trent Boult though having
played a match lesser than his
Tasmanian rival.
Fast-bowling all-rounder
James Faulkner was named
man-of-the-match for his devastating spell. The 24-year-old
struck on the first ball of the
second powerplay in the 36th
over to end a 111-run fourthwicket partnership between
Ross Taylor and Grant Elliott
by dismissing the former with
a slower delivery.
Australia captain Michael
Clarke dedicated Sunday`s
World Cup final triumph to
Phillip Hughes, the team-mate
who died after being hit on the
head by a bouncer last year.
Clarke described Hughes as
the squad`s 16th man at the
six-week tournament.
"I`m sure everybody standing on this stage will say we
Australian captain Michael Clarke holds the trophy aloft with his teammates
played this World Cup with
16 players," said Clarke. "This
victory is dedicated to our little brother Phillip Hughes.
Hughesy used to party as
good as any of them so I
guarantee we`ll celebrate hard
"The band has got PH on
it. I will wear it every game I
play for Australia. It`s been a
really tough few months."
In the first innings, after
the bowlers produced a clinical performance skittling out
New Zealand for 183, the
stage was set for the Australian captain, who used the
platform to the fullest with a
stylish 72-ball innings as the
hosts regained the trophy winning the match in 33.1 overs
ending an eight-year wait. The
moment Steve Smith (56) hit
the winning runs, the entire
Australian team was out in the
ground delirious in joy celebrating the very special
All performers yearn for a
stage as grand as the World
Cup final at the Melbourne
Cricket Ground and Clarke got
his walking out as a hero with
the entire MCG giving him a
standing ovation once he was
dismissed after getting his
team to the doorstep of victory.
Clarke added 112 runs in
the company of his deputy
Smith (56) and it looked as if
the skipper was passing on the
team’s baton to his heir apparent.
There were 10 fours and
two sixes in his final ODI
innings. Clarke had the Herculean job of checking his
emotions and carrying on with
the business of guiding his
team to victory after losing
openers Aaron Finch (0) and
David Warner (45). And the
skipper was up for it with.
Earlier, a collective display
of disciplined bowling from
the Australian bowlers helped
them restrict a nervous New
Zealand to a paltry 183 in 45
McCullum opted to bat.
A mid-innings collapse
which saw New Zealand lose
their last seven wickets for
only 33 runs in 10 overs effectively ended their hopes of
putting up a respectable total
despite semi-final hero Grant
Elliott’s gutsy innings of 83
off 82 balls.
Ironically, this is the second time that a team in a
World Cup final was bowled
out for 183 after India in the
1983 final against West Indies,
which they won by 43 runs.
Seamer James Faulkner’s
brilliant change-ups during the
middle overs saw him end
with impressive figures of 3/
36 in 9 overs as the Black
Caps collapsed from decent
150/3 after 35 overs to 183
all-out in 45 overs in about an
This was after Elliott along
with Ross Taylor (40) had
added 111 runs for the fourth
wicket after the visitors were
tottering at 39 for three.
complimented by the two
Mitchells — Starc (2/20 in 8
overs) and Johnson (3/30 in 9
overs) — who had the opposition batsmen in trouble with
pace and movement on a
lively MCG track.
Starc bowled a brilliant
delivery first up, to get rid of
Brendon McCullum, who was
McCullum charged and
missed out on a couple of balls
dug short and the result was
full delivery at the base of offstump which the batsman had
no answer.
Guptill, at the other end,
got a freak six when his intended pull off a Josh
Hazlewood short delivery flew
behind the wicketkeeper for a
six. Before that, he had hit a
copybook square drive.
Williamson were cautious during the first 10 overs in which
New Zealand scored 31 runs
as they got rid of the impetuosity that brought about
McCullum’s downfall.
The best shot during that
particular phase was a straight
drive from Williamson off
Hazlewood’s bowling.
Clarke introduced Glenn
Maxwell in the 12th over and
it brought dividends immediately. Guptill (15) was bowled
trying to cut a rather innocuous Maxwell delivery that was
tossed up on the off-stump
with not a hint of turn.
Williamson’s rather uncomfortable stay at the wicket
ended when Johnson
bowled a well disguised
slower as the right-hander
failed to check his shot. The
result was a simple return
catch which Johnson gleefully
accepted. Williamson scored
12 off 33 balls.
Elliott and Taylor then
started the repair job. While
Elliott was the aggressor, the
normally attacking Taylor was
ready to hold one end up
while nudging and pushing for
singles and twos.
Elliott started with a cut off
Maxwell and a mistimed hook
shot fetched him a six. There
were a couple of flowing
cover drives off James
Faulkner as he reached his 50
off 51 balls. With Taylor for
support, the fourth wicket
partnership crossed the 100run mark in 126 balls.
However, the New Zealand
innings lost direction from that
point. Taylor tried to steer a
wide delivery from Faulkner
as Brad Haddin took a fantastic one-handed catch stretching
to his right.
Corey Anderson (0) was
fooled by a yorker as Faulkner
suddenly cranked up the pace
and the left-hander couldn’t
get his bat down.
From 150/3 New Zealand
slumped to 150/5 and it soon
became 151 for six as Mitchell
Starc got Luke Ronchi (0) to
flash hard as Michael Clarke
took a nice catch at first slip.
Daniel Vettori (9) was yorked
by Johnson and Elliott, who
looked good for a century was
then taken by Faulkner as it
became 171 for eight. –– PTI
Pakistan must learn from Australia
and New Zealand, say former players
Former Pakistan Test players on
Sunday appealed to the
country’s cricket authorities to
learn from the success of
Australia and New Zealand in the
World Cup.
Shortly after Australia
bagged the title for the fifth
time, many former players
credited the captains of the
two teams for encouraging
their players to play a more
enjoyable, watchable and aggressive brand of cricket.
“I think it just shows how
big a role a captain has to play
in a team. New Zealand might
have lost but I give credit to
both captains for bringing in a
fresh approach to their teams
in this World Cup,” former
fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar said
on Geo News channel.
Akhtar pointed out that if
the captain and team management was willing to back the
players to play aggressive and
positive cricket than the results
would be good more often
than not. “These two teams
played fearless cricket and we
need to learn from them. Our
cricket has become stagnant
and our leadership also needs
to be fresh and aggressive,”
added Akhtar.
Pakistan’s recently retired
ODI captain Misbah-ul-Haq
has faced the brunt of criticism for the failed World Cup
campaign and is usually criticised
adventurous and showing flair
as captain and batsman to set
an example for his players.
Former Test captain turned
pundit, Rameez Raja also
lauded the approach of the two
finalists. “New Zealand cricket
has reinvented itself under
Brendon McCullum. They lost
today but they are a big saleable side now and they will do
better in future as well,”
Rameez said.
He said Pakistan cricket
also needed to reinvent itself
with a fresh approach. “We
can’t sit back and wait for
things to happen. We need
positive leadership and better
“Their batsmen are technically good and they are willing
to learn. We just don’t have
that sort of quality in our batting and that is why we are
suffering. It is not about just
bringing in new players it is
about finding and grooming
quality and technically strong
Yousuf pointed out that for
too long now Pakistan cricket
had become dull due to a fear
of defeat. –– PTI
Record 93,013 MCG
crowd for WC final
ground record crowd of 93,013
watched the World Cup final
between Australia and New
Zealand at the Melbourne
Cricket Ground on Sunday.
That shattered the venue‘s
previous record attendance
for a cricket match of 91,112,
according to officials.
Sunday‘s crowd has also
topped the attendance of
87,182 for the 1992 World
Cup final at the MCG between Pakistan and England.
Organisers added that
1,016,421 people attended the
matches at the six-week
World Cup. –– AFP
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