Aussies sail to comfortable win

2009-10-06 00:00

THE form guide suggested that this was a bit of a mismatch, and so it proved. Australia sealed a comfortable six-wicket triumph to successfully defend their Champions Trophy title from three years ago, thus ending New Zealand’s brave cup run.

Shane Watson (105*), in the form of his career, notched up a second consecutive unbeaten century — ending the tournament with two big sixes — to see Ricky Ponting’s side home.

This was the Watson that all of Australia has raved about for years. Blighted by injuries in the early stages of his career, he has finally had a decent run of games to prove that he is worth the hype.

“The Kiwi openers bowled beautifully upfront, and it was just a matter of surviving. I knew that if I was there around 40 overs, we would have a good chance,” Watson said.

His massive smile after he deposited Jeetan Patel deep into the crowd was that of a man who was as relieved as he was satisfied.

Australia, unbeaten throughout the Champions Trophy, did what they had to as they further illustrated their ability to rise to the occasion.

Player of the tournament Ponting was pleased with how his young guns had taken responsibility during the tournament.

“It’s been pleasing to see guys like Shane do so well in different conditions and situations, and we have had a good month and a half.”

The Kiwis had limped into the final, and then suffered a terminal blow before the toss as skipper Daniel Vettori was ruled out with a hamstring injury. Vettori was not only the Kiwis’ best bowler, he was also their leading run-getter at this tournament.

Vettori’s deputy Brendon McCullum took over, and he had an absolute shocker. He didn’t make a run, and then he dropped Cameron White to end any faint hopes the Kiwis may have had of an upset.

Australia’s win was built around steady, quick bowling and a fine spell from the under-rated Nathan Hauritz. The off-spinner snared three wickets to break the back of New Zealand’s middle-order efforts.

A pumped up Brett Lee bowled sharply, bagging two wickets as he passed 50 Kiwi scalps in ODI cricket.

Peter Siddle and Mitchell Johnson provided fine support and the Kiwis trudged along at just over three an over for most of their innings.

They received a shot in the arm through Neil Broom and James Franklin, who came together with the ship sinking at 107 for 5.

Broom was needlessly run out for 37 at a crucial stage, however, and the inevitable collapse then ensued. Franklin added a handy 33, but he was undone by Lee’s pace as the Kiwi effort closed on 200 for 9.

Some inspired new-ball bowling from Kyle Mills and Shane Bond saw Tim Paine and Ricky Ponting depart in a hurry, but it was a false dawn.

The Kiwis didn’t have enough on the board or in the tank. After the new ball was dealt with, it was merely a procession.

Australia collected yet another trophy, and some rather fetching cream jackets to match.

Scoreboard of the ICC Champions Trophy final

Toss: New Zealand

New Zealand innings

B McCullum c Paine b Siddle0

A Redmond st Paine b Hauritz26

M Guptill c and b Hauritz40

R Taylor c Hussey b Johnson6

G Elliott lbw Lee9

N Broom run out Hussey/Watson37

J Franklin b Lee33

K Mills run out Ponting12

I Butler lbw Hauritz6

J Patel not out16

S Bond not out3

Extras (b1, lb2, w9)12

Total (for 9 wkts, 50 overs)200

Fow: 1-5 (McCullum), 2-66 (Redmond), 3-77 (Guptill), 4-81 (Taylor), 5-94 (Elliott), 6-159 (Broom), 7-166 (Franklin), 8-174 (Butler), 9-187 (Mills)

Bowling: Lee 10-1-45-2 (5w), Siddle 10-1-30-1, Johnson 10-1-35-1 (1w), Watson 10-0-50-0 (2w), Hauritz 10-0-37-3 (1w)

Australia innings

S Watson not out105

T Paine c Taylor b Bond1

R Ponting lbw Mills1

C White b Mills62

M Hussey c Patel b Mills11

J Hopes not out22

Extras (lb3, w1)4

Total (for 4 wkts; 45.2 overs)206

Fow: 1-2 (Paine), 2-6 (Ponting), 3-134 (White), 4-156

Bowling: Mills 10-2-27-3, Bond 10-2-34-1 (1w), Butler 9-0-50-0, Franklin 9-0-42-0, Patel 6.2-0-44-0, Elliott 1-0-6-0

Result: Australia win by six wickets

Man of the Match: Shane Watson (Australia)

Man of the Tournament: Ricky Ponting (Australia)

— Sapa.

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