Kathmandu – Australia defeated the other host-nation – New Zealand by 7 wickets in the final of the ICC Cricket World Cup at Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday.
Dismissing New Zealand for 183 in 45 overs before an Australian record crowd of 93,013 at the MCG, Australia cruised to their fifth World Cup with Clarke scoring 74 in the home team’s 186 for three from 33.1 overs.
James Faulkner, who took two wickets in the first over of the batting powerplay, was named man of the match and Mitchell Starc was player of the tournament after taking 22 wickets at 10.18 runs each.
Starc, one of a trio of Australian left-arm fast bowlers along with Faulkner and Mitchell Johnson, struck the decisive blow for the home side when he bowled New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum for a duck with the fifth ball of the opening over.
Clarke, who announced his retirement from one-day cricket on Saturday, said the Australian team had played really well through the match.
McCullum, whose side were unbeaten in the tournament before Sunday’s match, said: “We played some outstanding cricket but we ran into an outstanding team in Australia. They continue to set the standard.”
Australia previously won the World Cup in 1987, 1999, 2003 and 2007. No other country has won the tournament, which was first held in 1975, more than twice.
“We’re really proud,” Clarke said. “It’s a wonderful achievement, to win in our own backyard in front of family and friends.”
1975 – WEST INDIES – beat Australia by 17 runs
1979 – WEST INDIES – beat England by 92 runs
1983 – INDIA – beat West Indies by 43 runs
1987 – AUSTRALIA – beat England by seven runs
1992 – PAKISTAN – beat England by 22 runs
1996 – SRI LANKA – beat Australia by seven wickets
1999 – AUSTRALIA – beat Pakistan by eight wickets
2003 – AUSTRALIA – beat India by 125 runs
2007 – AUSTRALIA – beat Sri Lanka by 53 Runs (D/L)
2011 – INDIA – beat Sri Lanka by six wickets
2015 – AUSTRALIA – beat New Zealand by seven wickets
with inputs from Reuters