George Bailey helps Australia beat Pakistan by four wickets in first ODI

Last Updated: Aug 29, 2012, 12:30 PM IST

Sharjah: George Bailey scored an unbeaten 57 to guide Australia to a four-wicket win in the opening match of their one-day series against Pakistan in Sharjah.

After bowling Pakistan out for 198 in hot and steamy conditions in Sharjah, Australia reached 6-199 with 10 deliveries to spare.

Skipper Michael Clarke top-scored for Australia with 66, adding to his 75 on Sunday against Afghanistan following his decision to promote himself to No.3 in the batting order.

Bailey ended the drama with a six and a single from the first two balls of the 49th over as Australia claimed a 1-0 lead in the three-match series, The Sydney Morning Herald reports.

While Australia`s quicks Mitchell Starc (5-42) and James Pattinson (3-19) dominated, it was a different story for Pakistan’s bowlers with spinners Saeed Ajmal (3-30), Mohammad Hafeez (2-29) and Shahid Afridi (1-37) taking the wickets.

Australia’s openers David Warner (five) and Matthew Wade (10) both departed cheaply after attempting to slog-sweep.

Clarke and Bailey steadied Australia`s innings with a 54-run stand, but Hafeez claimed the prize scalp of Clarke in his final over.

Needing only 20 runs from the last five overs with five wickets in hand, Glenn Maxwell for some reason played a risky reverse-sweep shot and was lbw to Ajmal for 38 in the 46th over.

But Bailey kept a cool head to ensure victory for Australia.