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Australia stretch its winning run

Sun, Mar 13, 2011 10:44 PM


Australia stretch its winning run

Collins Obuya played a valiant knock
Australia stretched its unbeaten run in Cricket World Cups for yet another game after beating Kenya by 60 runs in a Group A game at Bengaluru's M Chinnaswamy Stadium on Sunday.

Australia made 324 for 6 in its 50 overs and Kenya provided some fight but could not keep pace with the chase to finish at 264 for 6 in 50 overs.

Collins Obuya's unbeaten 98 off 129 balls, laced with nine boundaries and three sixes was the best batsman on view. His partnership of 115 for the fourth wicket with Tanmay Mishra (72: 89b, 8x4, 1x6) infused life into Kenya's chase.

Then a 86-run stand between Obuya and Thomas Odoyo (35: 38b, 4x4, 1x6) provided some hope but it was too little too late. Shaun Tait with figures of 2-49 was the best bowler on view.

Earlier, Australia ratcheted up 324-6 against Kenya as responsible half-centuries by Michael Clarke and the returning Mike Hussey dug their team out of trouble.

After Australia lost three quick wickets in the space of 15 balls, Clarke (93 off 80 balls) paced his innings to perfection to avoid a middle-order collapse while maintaining a steady run-rate.

Clarke and Hussey (54 in 43 balls), who celebrated his return to the World Cup squad with a typically industrious innings, came together with Australia in a spot of bother at 143-4 at the end of the 27th over and with a 300 plus score looking a long way off.

They immediately put the Kenyan fielders under pressure with singles and twos and the odd boundary to wrest the initiative back with a 114-run partnership for the fifth wicket at better than a run a ball.

Earlier Shane Watson (21) capitalised on some wayward bowling by the Kenyan openers and got Australia off to a flyer, notching up 35 in the first five overs after winning the toss and opting to bat.

However, that changed with the arrival of paceman Nehemiah Odhiambo who troubled the batsmen from the word go by mixing his pace with slower ones and not offering any width.

Odhiambo was rewarded with Watson's wicket after which captain Ponting (36) and Brad Haddin (65) set about putting together a scratchy 89 run partnership.

Haddin fell at the half-way stage trying to step up the run rate. Ponting and Cameron White (2) followed soon after as Australia slumped from a comfortable 127-1 to 143-4.

For Kenya, captain Jimmy Kamande's off spinners got him two for 46 while Odhiambo finished with three for 57.

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