Melbourne: Australia"s stand in skipper Michael Clarke scored a classy unbeaten century to guide his team to a series-clinching victory over Pakistan in their one-day match in Abu Dhabi.
Chasing Pakistan"s total of 197 all out, Clarke and Shane Watson combined for an unbroken 197-run stand, which carried Australia to 2-200 in the 45th over.
The eight-wicket victory gave Australia three straight wins and an unbeatable 3-1 lead in the five-game series, ensuring their first one-day series win since last September, when they beat Bangladesh in Darwin, FOX Sports reported.
Acting captain Clarke batted beautifully for 100 from 122 balls, looking comfortable throughout and stroking some elegant boundaries to continue the strong form he has showed throughout the series.
Watson (85 from 140 balls) made much harder work of his innings, struggling early before gradually asserting himself.
Clarke brought up his century with a classic cover drive boundary off Akhtar on the final ball of the 44th over, with Watson hitting the winning runs two balls later.
Clarke said breaking Australia''s series drought, particularly on foreign territory, was much more significant than bringing up his own century.
“I couldn"t care less (whether I reached the 100) to be honest, it didn"t really bother me, as I said to Watto, I said just keep batting and let''s just get these runs," he said.
“For me it"s about winning the series, I"m stoked personally to make some runs, but I"m more happy that we"ve won the series. It"s been a while since we"ve won a one-day series and to play the type of cricket we have in tough conditions, hot conditions, tough wickets, especially after coming from South Africa, the conditions have been so different."
Clarke said while himself and Watson performed with the bat in this match, the bowlers had been very good throughout the series and had again laid the platform for the batsmen in this game.