Pak seek foreign help to boost domestic game

Published: Saturday, September 29, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
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Michael Clarke hit a career-best 130 as Australia cantered to 307 for seven in the first one-day international against India here.

The 26-year-old clobbered 10 fours and three sixes in his 132-ball knock to pull Australia out from a tricky 90 for four after stand-in captain Adam Gilchrist elected to bat in the day-night game.

Clarke, who hit a 151 on his Test debut at this very venue three years ago, anchored the innings with perfection, the highlight of which were the two sixes he hit in an over by spinner Ramesh Powar.

He also shared a valuable 144-run stand for the fifth wicket with Brad Haddin, who chipped in with a 69, to negate the efforts of the home side riding high on their world Twenty20 triumph.

For India, mercurial seamer Shantakumaran Sreesanth claimed three key wickets to do the early damage after Zaheer Khan had Gilchrist dismissed through a brilliant catch by Yuvraj Singh.

The athletic left-hander lunged full length to his right at point to send back the explosive Australian opener for 12.

Sreesanth, who had dismissed Brad Hodge for a duck in his first spell, returned to claim the big wickets of Matthew Hayden (34) and Andrew Symonds (7) in a space of two overs.

Hayden tried to swing across the line, only to see the ball crashing on to his stumps while Symonds was trapped plumb leg before.

Haddin, a replacement for an injured Ricky Ponting, then joined hands with Clarke to put the innings back on track.

The 29-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman hit seven fours and a six before being stumped by Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni off Yuvraj.

All-rounder James Hopes provided the late sparks with a 37-run cameo off 25 balls before being dismissed in the last over which also saw Clarke being run out by Khan.


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