Margao: Desperate to sign off a disastrous tour on a high in the rain-threatened third ODI against India tomorrow, Australia captain Michael Clarke said his team remains a confident unit despite failing to register a single win so far on a “tough” trip.
Trailing the hosts 0-1, the Aussies could lose their first ODI series in India in over two decades if they lose tomorrow’s match or if it is washed out. The Aussies have already been handed a 0-2 drubbing in the Test series.
Clarke said he is hopeful that the weather would hold up.
“I hope the sun comes out. We came to the ground yesterday. The pitch looked really good, (but) the ground was a little bit wet. Hoping the rain goes away and there’s sunshine and we get a full game tomorrow,” Clarke said in the pre-match press conference here.
“All the boys are looking forward to tomorrow’s match. It’s obvious we have to win the game to square the series,” he added.
As if to answer the Australians’ wish, the rains stopped in the afternoon and both the teams were able to practice at the ground which had been covered.
The sun also came out from behind the clouds as the teams had a stint at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
“Tomorrow is an important game for us. All the boys would like to have a win and draw the series. All are disappointed we did not win the other night. I thought we played pretty well. All the guys are focused on tomorrow’s game,” he said.
Clarke, who scored a century in the second ODI only to see India chase down Australia’s imposing target of 290, said though the tour had not gone as the team wanted, they would like to end it on a high with a victory.
“It has been a tough tour. We have not got the results we would have liked, in the one one-day match as well as the Test series. We are looking forward to win the match tomorrow, draw series. I think we have one more night in bed before our flight (home). Hope the sun comes out and we have a match tomorrow.”
On his own form, Clarke said after his flop show in the two-Test rubber, he was happy to turn it around and score a century at Visakhapatnam.
“My performance in the Test series was not anywhere near what I would have liked. I am disappointed with my own personal performance. It was very satisfying to make a hundred the other night. Obviously I have been working pretty hard in the nets in batting but just could not find a way to make runs in the Tests,” he said.
Clarke scored 35 in four innings with 14 being his highest score, something unexpected from a man who scored a hundred on his Test debut in India (Bangalore) in October, 2004.
“I am happy to turn things around. (It’s) always wonderful to play cricket in India. To make another century here would be a great feeling. Hope I get one more century tomorrow if the game goes ahead,” he said.
The middle-order batsman said the team management, which has only 12 players to choose from for tomorrow’s final ODI, would wait till tomorrow to do the job.
“We haven’t had too much training today. We will have a look at the wicket today to see what the conditions are before selecting the 11 players. 11 out of the 12 players are getting a game. All the guys trained hard yesterday and are excited about the opportunity,” he said.
Clarke said with rains keeping the players indoor in the morning, they used different ways to while away the idle time, his own passion being tweeting.
“Everybody is different. Today a lot of guys have been to the gym. Lots of guys have brought their play stations to play computer games. I would be sending a few tweets. We are all excited and we would be ready for the game tomorrow,” he concluded.