Pace, with a dash of Lynn

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - - SPORT - RUS­SELL GOULD

THE new sce­nario for Aus­tralian white-ball suc­cess has to in­clude 150km/h bowl­ing book­ends able to be de­ployed at max­i­mum ef­fort – and at least a 20-ball burst of Lynnsan­ity.

So it proved at the MCG last night, as Aus­tralia booked their spot in the Twenty20 tris­eries fi­nal with a seven-wicket vic­tory over Eng­land.

The Aus­tralians re­mained un­beaten in this se­ries and are now as­sured of a spot in the Fe­bru­ary 21 fi­nal in Auck­land af­ter hav­ing downed Eng­land by five wick­ets in Ho­bart and beat­ing New Zealand in the se­ries opener.

The re­ju­ve­nated Aussies have proven an ir­re­sistible force in the past eight days.

But the mo­men­tum gath­ered on the back of a for­mula of speed with the ball and brute force with the bat de­pends on the on­go­ing fit­ness of sling­shot slug­ger Chris Lynn, Mitchell Starc, when the sched­ule al­lows him to play, and the best bolt of light­ning to wear a green and gold uni­form in 12 months – big Billy Stan­lake.

Stick thin and tall as a tree, Stan­lake is 204cm of manna from bowl­ing heaven for na­tional se­lec­tors who have seen speed ma­chines James Pat­tin­son and Nathan Coul­ter-Nile fall vic­tim to the in­jury curse.

On a sul­try night, Stan­lake sent the radar into rarely seen ar­eas at the MCG, break­ing the Eng­land re­sis­tance be­fore Lynn (31 off 19 balls) smashed four fours and two sixes in a seat- rat­tling early as­sault which made short work of the chase.

But first there was big Billy, who be­fore the sun set had the ball talk­ing and the Eng­lish bats­man baulk­ing.

Three balls in a row in his first over Stan­lake was through Eng­lish left-han­der Dawid Malan be­fore he could get his bat down.

Stan­lake’s open­ing over built from a base of 146km/h then top­ping out at 149.7, with a wicket as well, cour­tesy of a bril­liant Aaron Finch catch.

His 2-28, and some se­ri­ously good field­ing, helped the home team keep the bul­lock­ing Eng­lish bats to just 7-137.

Lynn first, then D’Arcy Short (36 not out) and Glenn Maxwell ( 39 off 26) helped gob­ble up the medi­ocre tar­get in a six-filled send-off – Aus­tralia club­bing seven to Eng­land’s one.

Be­yond the blis­ter­ing speed of Stan­lake and the con­trol of medium-pace marks­man An­drew Tye, Aus­tralia seem to have landed on the magic recipe for short-form suc­cess.

IN THE SWING: Chris Lynn hits out dur­ing Aus­tralia’s sev­en­wicket win over Eng­land last night. Pic­ture: Getty Im­ages

Billy Stan­lake cel­e­brates.


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