Strauss 'bitter' after loss
England skipper frustrated after failing to defend big total
England captain Andrew Strauss was left bitterly disappointed after watching Australia chase down a target of 334 in the sixth one-day international.
The tourists were in prime position to win only their second match of the series as a Jonathan Trott's 137 helped them to a strong total in Sydney.
But aided by half-centuries from Michael Clarke, Mitchell Johnson and Shane Watson, Australia responded with their highest ever one-day international run-chase to seal a two-wicket win.
And Strauss thinks that his side should have been able to avoid defeat, given the stranglehold they had seemed to take on the contest after their innings.
"Just bitter, I think," Strauss told Sky Sports when asked if the match had been a bitter-sweet experience.
"We had a very good batting performance, Jonathan Trott played outstandingly well and was well supported by a few of the lads. And 333 is a good score on any ground.
"It was a good wicket but obviously we were not helped by Paul Collingwood not being able to bowl. We let them get off to far too fast a start and they were able to keep up the rate.
"It was very, very disappointing we were unable to restrict them to less than 333. But all credit to the way they played. In the end they walked out worthy winners."
England's current one-day form does not bode well for the upcoming World Cup, although Strauss' side are set to have injured bowlers Graeme Swann, Tim Bresnan and Ajmal Shahzad back in the fold by then.
"I think in the World Cup we'll have to think about what the best balance is. We thought this was the best balance to win this game of cricket," Strauss said.
"And when you score 333 that should be enough but all credit to how Australia played."
He added: "It hasn't really because we've had lots of injuries and haven't been able to play our best side. hat was the same for Australia as well.
"I think we've got a lot of talent in our one-day squad and I think we can do a lot of good things in the World Cup."
Australia skipper Clarke said he was forced to gamble after being set such a daunting target but saw his tinkering with the batting line-up pay off, as Johnson made 57 from number four.
"We had to take a few risks. I guess I punted on Mitch going up the order and trying to smack a few and he batted really well," Clarke said.
"He strikes a ball as clean as anyone and he's shown again tonight that when he gets his opportunity he's not only a very good bowler, he can do some damage with the bat as well.
"To be able to come out and chase those runs, I'm stoked with that win."
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Siddhartha Guhathakurta says...
Australians are right on top gear,Its a full team game by Aussie,everybody played their role with much responsibility.Mitchel Johnson send to the top order & he performed very well.This team has proved that they're capable to chase any total at any cost,they can give opposition a tough fight with low-score.Before WC these victory will work as a adrenal for them.Those who are thinking that without Mcgrath,Warne,Gilchrist,Mathew Hayden Aussie are easily defeatable they're wrong.
Posted 14:04 2nd February 2011
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