'Michaels' put us on right track: Ponting

Published: Tuesday, November 4, 2003, 2:28 [IST]
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Pune: Australian captain Ricky Ponting on Monday gave credit to the two Michaels (Clarke and Bevan) for the thrilling two-wicket win over New Zealand in the triangular series cricket match .

"I thought we chased pretty well. It is a good effort on our part to restrict the New Zealanders to 258 and then chase the target even after losing four wickets for 65 runs. The two Michaels batted very well and put us on the right track after adding 108 runs under lot of pressure," Ponting said. "I think the toss was a huge factor. Probably if we had batted first, we would have struggled against bowlers like (Daryl) Tuffey and (Jacob) Oram but luckily, I won the toss and put them into bat. "Infact, we thought we would get them all out around 150 but Oram and (Brendon) McCullum batted exceedingly well and gave a fighting total for New Zealand," he said s his team romped into the November 18 final of the tri-series with 18 points from four matches.

The Aussie skipper also praised Man of the Match Brad Williams for his five-wicket haul."Williams bowled exceptionally well and deserved the Man of the Match award. In the end we could make it and I am happy that we are topping the points table." Kiwi fast bowler Daryl Tuffey, who attended the press meet in place of skipper Stephen Fleming, blamed the Pune pitch for the team's defeat. "We should have good wickets for One-dayers not this kind of a surface which helped the quick bowlers to do so much.

The ball did move for the better part of 25 overs before the track settled down by which time the match was as good as over for us.That's what happened in Faridabad, that's what happened here," he said. Tuffey also said that they were disappointed with their fielding today after Oram's fighting knock. "Our fielding let us down. We were good in patches but we could not field properly when it really mattered and gave away a few important runs in the end," Tuffey said. "I think the dropped catches cost us very dearly."

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