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Australia win by 7 wickets, bag 5th World Cup title

Electing to bat first, New Zealand were dismissed for 183 in 45 overs against Australia in the ICC Cricket World Cup finals at MCG on Sunday.

The semifinal hero, Grant Elliot was the top scorer with 83. Taylor made 40.

The Australian bowlers were up to the task right from the word go. Mitchell Johnson (3 for 30) and James Faulkner (3 for 36) were the pick of the bowlers. Mitchell Starc took 2 for 20, whle Maxwell took 1 for 37.

New Zealand

MJ Guptill, BB McCullum, KS Williamson, LRPL Taylor, GD Elliott, CJ Anderson, L Ronchi, DL Vettori, MJ Henry, TG Southee, TA Boult.


AJ Finch, DA Warner, SPD Smith, MJ Clarke, SR Watson, GJ Maxwell, JP Faulkner, BJ Haddin, MG Johnson, MA Starc, JR Hazlewood.

For the past one-and-a-half months, fans witnessed some intriguing contests among 14 teams for the coveted trophy. It has now come to the final moments with the top two teams fighting for the ICC World Cup 2015 trophy.

Both the hosts are in the final.

New Zealand has won all their group matches with authority except for the match against Australia which they won it by one wicket. New Zealand won a cliff-hanger against South Africa in the semifinals.

Australia, beaten by a narrow margin by New Zealand in the group stage, have won all the other matches with ease. The team trampled the defending champions India in the semifinals.

From our Sports Correspondent R. Narayanan:

A World Cup final can never be dismissed as just another game. It is the ultimate test of a player’s — and a team’s — character. Though the Cup is just a step away, it could become a steep climb if nerves take over. A look at the theme of the previous 10 finals.

Time for the toss

Captains winning the spin of coin have lost six of the 10 finals. Allan Border was the first skipper to get both right (1987), while Arjuna Ranatunga is the only one who has been successful after opting to chase (1996).

In England, all four editions (’75, 79, 83 & 99) saw the captain get it right after calling it right. However, in Australia and New Zealand in 1992, Pakistan skipper Imran Khan emerged winner on both counts.

The big question: bat or bowl?

Given the high stakes and pressure associated with a final, it’s commonly felt that setting a target is better than pursuing one. To vindicate this, seven of the 10 matches have gone in favour of the target-setter.

Ranatunga (’96), Steve Waugh (’99) and M.S. Dhoni (2011) are the only skippers to win batting second.

There’s a common thread to the chases: all three were sealed with a boundary. While Ranatunga and Darren Lehmann finished the task with a four, Dhoni went one better, smashing a six. The captains had the honour of hitting the winning runs in two of them (Ranatunga, Dhoni).

Tough call

In a cup final, captains can be forgiven for thinking that they could have scored more (batting first), or saved more (batting second). For, there is no clear-cut answer to the question: how much does a side need?

The mighty West Indies ran up huge totals (291 & 286) during its triumphs in ’75 and ’79, but couldn’t even chase India’s 183 in the next one!

India holds the twin honour of defending the smallest total (183 vs WI, 1983) as well as pulling off the biggest chase (277 vs SL, 2011) in finals. It also has the dubious distinction of conceding the highest runs — 359 to Ponting’s Australia, 2003.

Adam blows away opening blues

Before Gilchrist took guard in the 2007 final, no opener had scored a hundred in the summit clash. He changed all that with a typically, aggressive 149 against the hapless Sri Lankans. His score remains the highest in a World Cup final; it is still the only century by an opening batsman.


The first-ever dismissal in a World Cup final happened to be a hit-wicket, West Indies’s Roy Fredericks falling to Australia’s Dennis Lillee.

Gary Gilmour’s five-wicket haul went in vain for the Aussies in the 1975 final. The only other five-for came in the subsequent edition, when Joel Garner bowled West Indies to a thumping win over England.

With the bowlers at sixes and sevens, India employed eight of them in the 2003 final, a dubious record. Only two — Javagal Srinath and Aashish Nehra — finished their quotas.

Aravinda de Silva (’96) is the only player to score a century for a side chasing a target, while Mahela Jayawardene (2011) is the only batsman to end up on the losing side despite scoring a century.

Though the West Indians couldn’t complete a hat-trick at Lord’s, umpire Dickie Bird did, standing in the first three finals. Steve Bucknor broke Bird’s record, officiating in five successive finals (’92 to ’07).

Kapil Dev and Joel Garner share the record for the most maidens bowled in a final — 4. Both happened in the 1983 finale.

In the 1992 final, a bye-runner was seen in action in both innings: Aamer Sohail doubled up for Javed Miandad while Alec Stewart stepped up for Neil Fairbrother.

A rare combo: Ponting’s whirlwind knock of 140* against India in the 2003 final contained eight sixes but just four fours!

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Printable version | May 18, 2022 3:20:26 pm |