Hobart: Australia skipper Steven Smith today heaped praise on his bowlers for checking England's surge in the death overs and restricting them to 303 for eight in their cricket tri-series match here today.
"A lot of credit has to go to our bowlers for how they bowled in the last 20 overs to keep them down to 300. They are very good at how they bowl at the end and have clear plans, hopefully they can keep that up in the World Cup," said Smith after Australia beat England by three wickets here.
"300 was probably a good score for us to chase in the end," Smith, who won the man-of-the-match award for his 102 not out, added. Smith's third ODI century was instrumental in helping the home side chase down a stiff target of 304 with one ball to spare, as Australia recovered from late jitters to enter the tri-series final with a thrilling three-wicket win.
"It's nice to get a few runs again tonight and get the boys over the line," he said. "I'll never forget this summer. I've really enjoyed it, I've just got to try and keep going and score runs while I'm going well."
Brad Haddin scored a crucial 42 and gave Smith a good support as the duo put on a solid 81 runs together for the sixth wicket to help Australia win. "I thought Haddin really took the pressure off me in the end today...outstanding. We let it go a little bit later than we would have liked to but Starc came in at the end and put away the first ball," said Smith.
Asked if his team was looking forward to the finals, Smith said, "That would be one big game for us but I can't wait to get out at Sydney (for the last league match against India) and play another game at my home ground."
England captain Eoin Morgan conceded that the Australians snatched the game away from his team with their superb bowling in the death overs. "Credit to Australia for how they bowled at the death. Having watched most of it and faced one ball of it, today was their day. It was extremely difficult to set up to and the variations were pretty good. I think 300 was about par. If they hadn't bowled that well at the death we would have got 340-350, a match-winning score," he said.
Morgan, however, applauded Ian Bell for his brilliant innings of 141 runs. "Wasn't a bad day in general. We played good cricket in stages. Ian Bell was magnificent but the last 10 overs let us down a little bit," he said.