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Prime minister among sleepless Australians on Sunday morning

Prime minister among sleepless Australians on Sunday morning

Prime Minister John Howard was among the thousands of bleary-eyed Australians on Sunday after their team won cricket's World Cup for the third straight time.
In a farcical finish in near darkness, Australia overpowered Sri Lanka by 53 runs under the Duckworth-Lewis system at Bridgetown, Barbados, continuing its 23-match winning streak in the tournament that began in 1999.
The match was played mostly overnight Australian time, finishing about 8:30 a.m. Sunday on the east coast. Wicketkeeper and opening batsman Adam Gilchrist led Australia's victory with 149 runs from 104 balls.
"The rain sort of delayed the start, I then got up in the middle of the night to see some of Gilchrist, then I went back to bed then I watched the last two hours," Howard said.
"Congratulations to Ricky (Ponting) and the boys," added Howard, who has described himself as a "cricket tragic" in the past.
Howard also paid tribute to retiring bowler Glenn McGrath.
"To Glenn McGrath, that lanky bloke from Narromine, thanks for a wonderful contribution to Australian cricket," said Howard. "He joins the greats of Australian fast bowlers, he's a wonderful bloke and he's been a wonderful player and he went out on a very high note."
McGrath was named player of the tournament.
Not to be outdone, the man who will face Howard in federal elections later this year, Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd, said Australia's cricketers were taking cricket to new heights.
"What can you say about this team?," said Rudd, leader of the Labor Party. "I saw them through that fantastic (Ashes) test series here over the summer and they just keep taking the standard of Australia's cricket professionalism to new heights."


Updated : 2021-04-18 02:57 GMT+08:00