MacGill and Warne lead assault as Australia rule World

Manifestly, Australia have made a full recovery from their Ashes defeat. Ricky Ponting led the side with renewed purpose, Adam Gilchrist was full of beans, Matthew Hayden has recreated himself, while Glenn McGrath and Warne remain near their peaks. Most of all, the support bowling was effective. It was an impressive performance.

Ponting must have been encouraged by the contributions of his back-up bowlers on this fourth day. Previously a weak link, Lee produced a sturdy effort indicating a recognition that profligacy is better left to dictators' wives and govern-ments seeking re-election.

Taking a leaf from Hayden's book, the flyer has tightened his game. He deserved his single, fortuitous, scalp. Inzamam-ul-Haq fell to a delivery that snaked back into his pads. Had Rudi Koertzen referred the appeal to his comrade in the pavilion, the mistake would been avoided. Instead, the lugubrious Pakistani had reason to rue his luck. Otherwise, right was served in this match. If the system of referrals is to be rejected it cannot be on the grounds of injustice.

MacGill also bowled admirably. Pitching his leg-break precisely on a chilly Monday morning, he bowled accurately enough to allow his captain to crowd forthright opponents. His googly remains as hard to read as James Joyce and his deliveries turned and bounced sharply from a dusty surface. Since he took wickets as doomed tailenders laid about themselves like drunken reapers, his figures (9 for 82) were flattering. Nevertheless he appeared settled, confident and dangerous. If he maintains form he will play a lot of Test cricket hereafter.

Even so, Warne was the best of the bowlers. Summoning another great performance, he prised out skilful batsmen. After an hour of resistance, Rahul Dravid was beaten by a delivery that faded and turned, Hayden pouncing upon the edge at slip. Brian Lara played some exquisite and adventurous strokes until he was confounded by a leg-break hidden amongst numerous sliders. Mark Boucher was dismissed by a ripper that turned and bounced and might as well have performed somersaults. In between, Inzy was dispatched as Lee's inswinger pierced a belated defensive stroke.

MacGill did the rest. Andrew Flintoff's bold innings ended as a sweep was held on the square-leg boundary, Daniel Vettori prodded to silly point, Steve Harmison did not detect the wrong 'un and Muttiah Muralitharan charged in a manner that would have pleased Lord Cardigan.

Naturally, the Australians were delighted. Doubtless the size of their pay cheques helped. Still, they are paid a pittance besides the fees dished out to American sports and chief executives.

Among the hosts, only Simon Katich has any cause for concern. Struck in the field, he incurred a slight fracture of a little finger. Brad Hodge is next in line. Despite his poor returns, Shane Watson will hold his place. Indeed, he has an important part to play. Provided he can slightly improve his work with the ball, he brings balance and energy to the side. Playing five bowlers is much easier when one of them can bat.

Contrastingly, everything went wrong for the visitors. Possibly the concept was doomed anyhow and the International Cricket Council chief executive, Malcolm Speed, cast doubt yesterday on whether the Super Series would be staged again. Poor selection, lost tosses, injuries, timing, bad weather, England's Ashes win and artificial venues counted against the project.

In hindsight a longer preparation was needed, and one group of players with one captain. No harm has been done, though. No one can be blamed for trying something. Much the same applies to the referring of appeals. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.


Australia v ICC World XI

(Sydney Cricket Ground)

Australia won toss

AUSTRALIA - First Innings 345 (M L Hayden 111, A C Gilchrist 94; A Flintoff 4-59).

WORLD XI - First Innings 190 (V Sehwag 76; S C G MacGill 4-39).

AUSTRALIA - Second Innings 199 (M L Hayden 77, R T Ponting 54).


(Overnight: 25 for 2)

R Dravid c Hayden b Warne 23

B C Lara c Gilchrist b Warne 36

J H Kallis not out 39

Inzamam-ul-Haq lbw b Lee 0

A Flintoff c Sub b MacGill 15

ÝM V Boucher c Hayden b Warne 17

D L Vettori c Ponting b MacGill 0

S J Harmison lbw b MacGill 0

M Muralitharan st Gilchrist b MacGill 0

Extras (b1 lb2 nb4) 7

Total (50 overs) 144

Fall: 1-0 2-18 3-56 4-69 5-70 6-122 7-143 8-144 9-144

Bowling: McGrath 6-3-8-1; Lee 10-2-42-1; Warne 19-4-48-3; MacGill 15-4-43-5.

Australia won by 210 runs.

Umpires: R A Koertzen (SA) and S J A Taufel (Aus).

Man of the match: M L Hayden (Aus).

Man of the series: A C Gilchrist (Aus).

peopleFrankie Boyle responds to referendum result in characteristically offensive style
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvHe is only remaining member of original cast
Arts and Entertainment
tvHighs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
Harry Redknapp. Mark Hughes and Ryan Shawcross
footballNews and updates as Queens Park Rangers host the Potters
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
New Articles
i100... with this review
Holly's review of Peterborough's Pizza Express quickly went viral on social media
New Articles
Arts and Entertainment
musicHow female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Arts and Entertainment
musicBiographer Hunter Davies has collected nearly a hundred original manuscripts
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam