Clarke enjoys 'special' win
Australia captain Michael Clarke was full of praise for his side after they bounced back to win their ODI series against Pakistan.
Last Updated: 04/09/12 8:03am
Australia captain Michael Clarke was full of praise for his side after they bounced back from defeat in England to win their one-day international series against Pakistan in Sharjah.
The tourists managed to cope with sweltering heat and a four-pronged Pakistan spin attack to chase down a victory target of 245 with three wickets in hand in the decider.
Mike Hussey led the pursuit with 65, while Glenn Maxwell continued to impress with an unbeaten 56, from 38 balls, to secure the win.
Maxwell, who was one of the few Australian batsmen to dominate mystery spinner Saeed Ajmal (3-37), finished the game with a towering six after reaching his maiden half-century.
It meant Australia immediately got back to winning ways following their 4-0 reverse against England this summer, which saw them relinquish top spot in the ODI rankings.
"It's very special, obviously after our defeat in England," Clarke said.
"You know, we worked really hard before coming on this series. We were up in Darwin as a team and worked hard against spin bowling.
"I think we found conditions again so different to what we tried to prepare for up in Darwin, especially with the heat - I've never played in heat like this and humidity like this.
"What the most pleasing thing is - the whole series was won by the whole team, it wasn't one individual player that won tonight and that won us this series.
"It was a tough victory against a very good one-day team in Pakistan and you won't get the smile off this face, that's for sure."
The Australians were in trouble early in their run chase, after Ajmal took three quick wickets.
But after a shaky start to his knock, man-of-the-match Hussey delivered when it mattered once again, making 65 to put his side on top, and Clarke paid tribute to the 37-year-old batsman.
"We don't win tonight and we don't win the series - so it's always a pleasure having him (Hussey) in the team and he continues to perform consistently," he said.
Clarke also hailed the efforts of paceman Mitchell Starc, whose four wickets in the third match earned him the man-of-the-series award following his five-wicket haul in the opener.
"He's had a great series and deserves man of the series. Conditions - there hasn't been much for fast bowlers at all," he said.
"As a batter, you'd look forward to facing fast bowlers at any opportunity.
"I think he deserves a lot of credit, Starcy. He's made the most of his opportunity."