Bridgetown: It was a momentous day for the history of England cricket as they clinched their first ever major ICC tournament title, that is, the World T20 Champions by defeating age-old rivals Australia by 7 wickets.
It was not only a victory for England, but also a moment of pride as the creators of the game finally have a major trophy on their shelf.
England ruled the battleground since the very beginning. After winning the toss and electing to bat first, England revived the Ashes-rivalry in the shortest format as well as they took of to a brilliant start against the Aussies, reducing them to 8/3 within the first three overs itself.
Ryan Sidebottom became the star for England as he first dismissed opener Shane Watson (2) and Brad Haddin (1) in the first and third over respectively.
Meanwhile, Michael Lumb’s spontaneous fielding led to a run-out dismissal of the other Australian opener, David Warner (2).
Standing at a rickety position, Michael Clarke and David Hussey tried to elevate Australia’s run-rate but failed miserably as England bowlers maintained a tight grip on their opponents. In the 10th over, Australia received another major blow as Paul Collingwood took a brilliant catch off Swann’s delivery to dismiss Clarke for 27 runs.
The (Cameron) ‘White’ charm to did not last long for Australia as he too lost his wicket to Stuart Broad who got him caught by Luke Wright.
However, the Hussey brothers, David and Michael, kept on struggling till the very end. David added 59 runs, his third T20 International half-century, to finally conclude Australia’s innings at 147/6.
A target of 148 seemed meager enough for England to chase as the only ‘setback’, so as to say, for them was the initial wicket of opener Michael Lumb (2).
Thereafter, there was no looking back for England as a tremendous 111-run partnership between Kevin Pietersen (47) and Craig Kieswetter (56) completed half the job for their team.
Later skipper Collingwood (12) and Eoin Morgan (15) completed the final formalities to hand over the most-awaited victory to their nation.
First Published: Monday, May 17, 2010, 10:06