Australia goes one up on Clark’s super spell
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter
DateLine: 27th May 2008
Just as the action seemed to be hotting up at the IPL, Australia was away on a tour to West Indies for the Sir Frank Worrell trophy and the first Test was played at Kingston, Jamaica. Ricky Ponting won the toss and decided that Australia would bat first.
Loss of early wickets and his own personal bad form did not deter Ponting, as he scored a masterly ton before getting out for 158, as the Aussies looked all set to score somewhere in excess of 500. However, some really hostile bowling by Fidel Edwards thwarted any such hopes as the Australians managed 431 in their first innings. West Indies started reasonably well before losing three quick wickets for 68. Runako Morton and Shivnaraine Chanderpaul then got together to stitch a good partnership, which was followed by a Bravo-Chanderpaul one. However, once Bravo departed with the score at 262, the all so familiar collapse ripped apart the lower order of the Windies batting. Chanderpaul was the last man out for 118, as the West Indies ended with 312, conceding a lead of 119.
West Indies may have conceded a big lead, but they fought back through some spirited bowling by the front line bowlers, Fidel Edwards and Darren Powell, who reduced the Aussies to 18/5 at one stage and then 70/6. However, Andrew Symonds then took the attack to the opposition and savaged a 79, which saw the Aussies to some respectability, as they ended with 167, an over lead of 286. Chasing a target like 287 against Australia in the last innings is usually difficult, and it soon became evident why. Stuart Clark exploited the up-and-down nature of the pitch to the hilt, as the West Indies slumped from 55/1 to 82/6, and any recovery from then on was going to marginal. Wicket keeper Ramdin and Darren Sammy did hold the fort for a while, but in the end it was all too little too late, as Stuart MacGill wrapped it up for the Aussies by 95 runs.
Stuart Clark won the Man-of-the-Match award for his match haul of 8/91.