Lorgat presents ICC ODI Shield to Australia
Melbourne: ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat on Wednesday presented the ICC ODI Shield to Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland in recognition of the team being ranked number one in the 50-over World Cup.
Sutherland also received the prize-money cheque of USD 175,000.
Haroon Lorgat, while congratulating Michael Clarke and his team for retaining the number one ranking, said: "In the past 20 years the Australian team has maintained an amazing grip on the Reliance ICC ODI Shield. They have simply dominated the 50 over format and show no signs of relinquishing their crown.
"This is the third successive year that Australia has been the top ODI side and indeed their dominance stretches back to 2002. Only in 2008 and 2009, when South Africa pushed them into second place, has Australia not been the number one side at the April 1 cut-off date.
"The importance of the Reliance ICC ODI Shield should be celebrated as this is the ICC Cricket World Cup format. It is no coincidence that Australia won successive World Cups in 2003 and 2007 during a period when they virtually owned the Shield."
Australia captain Michael Clarke, ahead of his team`s departure for a One-Day International series in England, said his side continues to strive for improvement.
"We`ve been ranked number one in ODI cricket for some time now and have a well-balanced side that competes in any conditions.
"We are always looking to improve and we head to the UK tomorrow to take on England and Ireland in this form of the game. The series against England will be a great challenge for us ? the number one ranked ODI team against the number one ranked Test team in English conditions."
Sutherland congratulated Clarke`s team saying: "In three years Australia and New Zealand will host the ICC Cricket World Cup and I`m delighted that it is in this form of the game Australia is again ranked number one in the world.
"Our research tells us Australian fans love ODI cricket and we have some exciting, young talent that will ensure the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 will inspire a generation of cricket fans across the world."