Faulkner, Starc go one-up on batsmen

Faulkner, Starc go one-up on batsmen

Faulkner, Starc go one-up on batsmen

 In a format that is dominated by the batsmen, two bowlers, both left-arm pacers, occupied the centre stage at the end of the finale.

Mitchell Starc, who finished the joint highest wicket-taker with 22 scalps in the tournament, was adjudged the man of the tournament while James Faulkner, who claimed 3/36, was declared the man of the final on Sunday night as Australia grabbed the World Cup for the fifth time riding their bowlers’ performance.       

“I suppose the obvious change to the rules was only four fielders outside the circle,” stated Faulkner. “So I don't know how it's worked out, but at the end of the day, both Mitch and myself and the Australian cricket team are wrapped with what's happened this afternoon and this evening,” he remarked.

Starc said it was nice to dominate the bat. “There have been some fantastic performances with both. Obviously, there's been a couple of big scores, a couple of double tons. It's just been fantastic the whole tournament, and I guess from the Australian point of view, I think we've worked really hard at our bowling, not only in the World Cup but leading up to it, and to see it come off, I think every bowler who's bowled in the tournament, not just the guys who played the final, it's been fantastic.

Mitch Marsh took five for us in the first game and missed out on the back end of the series. To watch Jimmy (Faulkner) take three in the semi and in the final… He bowled fantastic, but I think the whole bowling unit itself was awesome,” he offered.

New Zealand seamer Trent Boult too had a tally 22 wickets in his team’s run to the final but Starc’s economy and average were way better. Starc finished with an economy rate of 3.50 runs per over as against Boult’s 4.36 while the Aussie conceded 10.18 runs a wicket as against 16.86 by the Kiwi. 

“I think it's been probably a bit of luck involved, but I think we've all done it really well,” Starc noted of his control. “I think we've all complemented each other throughout the tournament. I'm speaking on behalf of the Australian squad anyway. But yeah, look, it's been awesome.

We've got guys who do things differently in the 15, got guys who can swing it, guys who can bowl -- a few guys who can bowl in the 150s. Jimmy comes in and uses variations better than most people. Look, I think we've covered all bases with our bowling attack, and to see it come to fruition tonight, to restrict New Zealand, who have been more or less the benchmark from the start, to 180, was just fantastic.”

Faulkner’s injury during the tri-series final left him worried for his World Cup future but he ended the campaign on a satisfying note.   “To be brutally honest I thought I was in big trouble,” he said. “The first three, four, five days were quite tough, but at the end of the day the support staff were amazing around me to get me back on the park,” he stated.

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