Potchefstroom: Australia's Glenn McGrath claimed the best ever World Cup bowling figures of seven for 15 on Thursday as the world champion crushed Namibia by 256 runs on a day when the cricket record books were re-written. McGrath led the way as the Australians dimissed the Namibians for just 45 runs in 14 overs to clinch their 11th successive One-day International triumph and equal the record set by the West Indies in 1985.
Australia had piled up 301 for six off its 50 overs before bowling out Namibia to record the biggest winning margin in One-day International history, bettering Sri Lanka's 245-run win against India in Sharjah three years ago. Once the 33-year-old McGrath had got rid of opener Jan Burger with the fourth ball of the innings, the result was never in doubt as his seven-over spell eventually beat the previous best World Cup figures of seven for 51 by West Indian Winston Davis.
For Namibia, only captain Deon Kotze reached double figures with 10 while the top score was 15 in the extras column. Andy Bichel took two wickets, Brett Lee chipped in with one while wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist got in on the act by taking six catches against a team who also set records, but for all the wrong reasons. Their meagre total equalled the fourth lowest in all One-day Internationals while seamer Rudi van Vuuren's figures were decimated by a last over onslaught from Darren Lehmann who smashed 28, the most runs ever off an over in the World Cup.
The Namibian bowler conceded 92 runs in his 10 overs - the second most expensive figures in a World Cup match. With five wins out of five, Australia top Group 'A' and can look forward with confidence to its final group game against England in Port Elizabeth on Sunday. Earlier, Matthew Hayden's 88 off 73 balls was spiced with nine boundaries and three sixes but Lehmann stole the show with some lusty late hitting.
The 33-year-old from South Australia hit four boundaries and two towering sixes off van Vuuren's last over, the fourth most expensive in all One-day Internationals. Before Lehmann's quickfire innings Australia had to thwart some disciplined bowling and fielding from the minnows. Namibia gave its only black player Burton van Rooi his first chance and the 20-year- old bowled Gilchrist for 13 in the sixth over. Michael Bevan, who became the fourth Australian to play 200 One-day games, put on 78 for the second wicket with Hayden before he fell to a sharp return catch off Louis Burger.
Hayden, who hit nine boundaries and three sixes, played across the line to Louis Burger and was bowled while captain Ricky Ponting played uppishly and was caught at cover for just two, leaving Australia at 146 for four. It was left to Lehmann and Brad Hogg to add 70 off just 43 balls for the seventh wicket to post Australia's 300. Copyright AFP 2001