More Sites
Search
The home of Baggygreen.com.au
‘Ghost’ dashes down football sideline‘Ghost’ dashes down football sideline French footballer jailed for headbuttFrench footballer jailed for headbutt American blows certain try with intercept passAmerican blows certain try with intercept pass
advertisement
Most popular articles
Year in ReviewThe tears, tragedy
and triumph of 2014
Wide World of Sports TV partners
Wide World of SportsCatch up with Ken Sutcliffe and the team on Wide World of Sports.NRL Footy ShowFatty and the gang bring you an entertaining look at rugby league.AFL Footy ShowAustralia's favourite team takes you through the week in AFL.Footy ClassifiedOur award winning panel tell it how it really is in the AFL world.
Watson stars in Aussie win but Clarke injured
Ben Horne
23:47 AEST Fri Feb 8 2013

Australian captain Michael Clarke appears unlikely to play in Sunday's final one-dayer after asking medical staff to assess a soreness in his right hamstring following Friday night's five-wicket win over the West Indies in Sydney.

All indications suggest the strain is minor, but it's unlikely Australia would risk their most valuable commodity for a dead-rubber ODI, when he's set to fly to India on Monday morning for a four-Test series.

Clarke appeared to be moving slowly while making 37, as Australia chased down the West Indies' total of 220 with 5.1 overs to spare.

The skipper was seen clutching at his hamstring and looking ginger when he took to the field for interviews post-match.

It's the same hamstring Clarke injured earlier in the summer, and carried through the second and third Tests against Sri Lanka.

The problem later ruled him out of the opening ODIs against Sri Lanka.

A Cricket Australia spokesman told the media that Clarke had asked to have his right hamstring assessed by team medical staff in the dressing rooms.

Further details on the severity of the problem will emerge once Clarke has seen the Australian physio.

Clarke failed to front the post-match media conference, with Mitchell Johnson instead appearing.

Vice-captain Shane Watson shapes as the likely candidate to skipper the team on Sunday, with Australia looking to complete a 5-0 clean sweep of the Windies.

Despite Australia's comfortable win in game four, Aaron Finch was out for 25 and again failed to cement his place in the one-day picture looking towards the 2015 World Cup.

However batting partner Watson continued to flourish at the top of the order.

He continued to take his chances and prove he's best suited to opening the batting in all forms with a rock-solid half century.

Watson's timing couldn't be better - following up his ton in Canberra on Wednesday with 76 from 84 balls on Friday - as he chases a return to opening in the Tests in India.

The West Indies were 6-55 and facing the embarrassment of another sub-100 total on Friday, before a dazzling rearguard century from man of the match Kieron Pollard saved face.

But his 109 not out couldn't prevent Australia going up 4-0 and within arms reach of an all-too-easy series clean sweep in Melbourne on Sunday.

On an individual front, though, things don't look as rosy for Finch.

Finch hasn't been able to convert his excellent domestic one day competition (averaging 99.4) and Big Bash (66.4) form and lock up a position ahead of June's Champions Trophy and, in turn, the World Cup in two years.

In ODIs this summer, Finch has averaged 21 with a highest score of 38.

Earlier, Johnson (3-36) had the Windies reeling at 3-17 after eight overs.

Johnson said competition for bowling spots in India is as fierce as he can recall but hopes to be in Australia's starting XI for the first match.

"I feel my form throughout this ODI tournament has been very good," he said.

"I'm not sure what's going to happen in India. To be fair, we've still got one more game here.

"We want to win five nil so we're almost there and then we can focus on India."

Ben Cutting also took three wickets after being called into the team for the rested Mitchell Starc - who also won't play in Melbourne.

Adam Voges (28) replaced George Bailey, who was ruled out with a slight hamstring strain.

Pollard's third ODI century at least kept the groaning 18,161 fans interested for longer.

Watson was dropped by wicketkeeper Devon Thomas on 32 with the score at 1-78.

Johnson said Watson had returned to the form that won him the Allan Border Medal in 2010-11, and said it was a confidence booster for the team heading to India following the retirement of Mike Hussey.