Cricket World Cup 2015

'Skill, not emotion,' wins CWCs

2015-03-28 10:22
Michael Clarke (AFP)

MELBOURNE, March 28 - Australia's retiring one-day captain Michael Clarke has urged his players to put "skill over emotion" in their bid to down New Zealand in Sunday's World Cup final, though his swan-song is sure to imbue the match with extra sentiment.

Clarke announced his retirement from the one-day game on the eve of the Melbourne Cricket Ground blockbuster and will hope to wrap up his career in the 50-over format by leading Australia to a fifth world trophy.

Clarke's captaincy has proved torrid in recent months, grieving the death of team mate Phillip Hughes and battling a succession of hamstring injuries.

His race to be fit for the World Cup overshadowed Australia's preparations, and local media are certain to question the timing of his retirement announcement.

Clarke said nothing would change in his preparation for the 245th and final ODI of his career, though his every movement is certain to be under heightened scrutiny.

"It's a special game, no doubt about it, but it needs to be about the team and I want it to be about the team," he told reporters at the MCG on Saturday.

"I just said it to my team mates then. And I've been the one to come out and say, 'it's not emotion, it's skill that helps you win major games and major tournaments, and tomorrow will be no different'.

"It's a wonderful opportunity for every single player in that change room to walk out onto the MCG in a World Cup final.

"It's a very special event. But yeah, it's no more special because it's my last game."

Brendon McCullum confirmed New Zealand would bring the same team that downed South Africa in a semi-final cliff-hanger in Auckland.

Australia are also expected to bring the same side that thrashed India in Sydney, though Clarke could not confirm it.

He threw his arm around his New Zealand counterpart McCullum in a private moment during a photo-shoot with the trophy.

Both captains have been open about their mutual admiration, and Clarke's mantra about playing with "freedom" could have been straight from McCullum's mouth.

"The fact that the whole team is here again today at an optional training session shows the dedication, shows where the team is at mentally," Clarke said.

"I don't think I have to say too much to be honest. I think the guys are ready to play. Like I said after the last game, mentally we are ready for this final.

"Physically we've got another day to recover or try and get what you need to be right for tomorrow, but I think the team is ready."

Read more on:    australia  |  cwc 2015  |  michael clarke  |  cricket


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Sport Talk
Breaking News

Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Match Result

Australia won their fifth Cricket World Cup over the weekend. Does it leave a bitter taste in your mouth that the Proteas didn't get to play them?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.