Gilly wants to tango with Haydos in World Cup

Published: Tuesday, January 30, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
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Sydney:Australian opener Adam Gilchrist has backed the broad shouldered Mathew Hayden to be his World Cup partner after the Queenslander rode on luck to score a ton against the Kiwis in Perth.

''I fully expect Haydos to go to the World Cup, and I think he is re-establishing himself at the top of the order very well,'' Gilchrist said.

''It feels like it has worked well when we have played together.

He is terrific to bat with. I think we complement each other pretty well,'' the Australian keeper was quoted as saying to Herald Sun.

Hayden scored a scrappy 117, thanks to the Black Caps' generosity in dropping Hayden thrice, the first time when he was on naught, but it may still be enough to see Hayden take the flight to West Indies.

Hayden had to wait two years to score an ODI ton on Sunday after a surprise recall to the shorter version of the game.

Gilchrist and Hayden have shared modest results as an opening pair in the six games of the on-going tri-series, although they together plundered 4149 runs in 86 games at an average of 49.3.

Hayden's only threat appears to be all-rounder Shane Watson, who is expected to be named in the 15-man cup squad.

But after scoring his sixth century, Hayden said he had the form and experience to make the cut.

''My record doesn't lie,'' Hayden said. ''The fact I've had longevity in the game has been a bonus. There's certainly a carrot dangling with the World Cup, but we've got a series to win here and another series as well (Chappell-Hadlee Series) and I look forward to playing good cricket throughout the tournament.''

The prolific left-hander, who has been more successful as a Test opener, says, ''It's a slightly different tempo. But my game in Test cricket is not dissimilar to One-day cricket. It's just having the confidence to display every time I walk out to bat,'' he said.

However, the man at the helm of affairs, Ricky Ponting was a little more circumspect.

''I think Matty started the series off really well. He probably let a couple of scores get away from him at the start when he was full of confidence coming off the Test series,'' Ponting said.

''Perth was exactly what he was after and exactly what the team was after,'' the Aussie skipper said.


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