Mitchell Starc savaged West in valiant World Cup win for Australia
Australia ripped West Indies into shreds. In the late sun of a long, saccharine summer day, an intense match as any Test, twists, and turns as any game of T20, finally ended in a 15-run victory for Australia.
Australia recovered from a nasty start to beat West Indies in a superb World Cup encounter at Trent Bridge. It was where fortunes shifted throughout. The ferocious West Indies pace attack reduced the defending champions to 38-4 and 79-5.
There was a lot to chew over, threating fast bowling at high speed, masterly batting, wild and ludicrous six -hitting. Also, there was some slapstick catches that were dropped, some improbable one that was held and an amateurish run-out.
The umpires Chris Gaffaney and Ruchira Palliyaguruge, both had bad matches. The Windies overturned four decisions on review. Two of them were given against Chris Gayle by Gaffaney, one for a catch behind when the ball had actually missed his bat, another, two balls later, for an lbw off a ball that would have missed leg stump. The Calculation then that this was his lucky day.
Gayle waved 14 runs off Pat Cummins in the next over, with fours through long-off, midwicket, and long-on. And then Gaffaney gave him out a third time, lbw to Mitchell Starc again.
Australia was held tight together by the unexcitable Steve Smith, who made 73 and was only dismissed by the most reliable boundary catch by Sheldon Cottrell. By the time Smith was out, Nathan Coulter-Nile, batting at number eight, had already started his power hitting in a 60-ball lifted Australia to 288 all out. What a spectacular performance.
After Chris Gayle threatened to exhilarate in his 21, West Indies were anchored by Shai Hope’s 68. The hunt was ultimately left to captain Jason Holder, but both he and Carlos Brathwaite fell in the same over from Mitchell Starc, whose 5-46 assisted restrict the Windies to 273-9.
Windies pace opened a quality contest between these two sides. It was the most exciting pace attacks in the tournament so far. The determination of Smith, the pyrotechnics of Coulter-Nile, the wonder of Cottrell’s catch, the drama of four overturned reviews in the West Indies innings and the tension of the tight finish.
Cottrell, Oshane Thomas, and Andre Russell do not simply bang the ball into the pitch and hope for the most excellent. They have the prowess to bowl aggressive bouncers that still, for the most part, remain within one-day crickets rules on short bowling
Thomas persuaded a temporary poke from Aaron Finch, while Cottrell had David Warner caught at point and Glenn Maxwell top-edged a hook. Both of the left arm’s were honoured with his emblem salute.
Superb and brilliant Starc sealed it. “We just kept hanging in there. We were able to fight back through Alex Carey and Steve Smith getting us a bit deeper. Then for Nathan Coulter-Nile to play the way he did was exceptional.
“We’ve always felt he had the ability to do something like that and this time he had the opportunity to bat a bit longer.
“I absolutely was nervous. At 38-4 and they keep coming hard at you – we just had to keep hanging in there and to get 288, in the end, was outstanding.” Said Australia captain Aaron Finch according to BBC Sports.
ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, Trent Bridge
Australia 288(49 overs0: Coulter-Nile 92, Smith 73, C Brathwaite 3-67
West Indies 273-9(50 overs): Hope 68, Holder 51, Starc 5-46
Australia won by 15 runs