Pacers guide Australia to victory

Published: Dec 19, 2012, 08:04 IST | AFP |

Pacemen Peter Siddle and Mitchell Starc bowled Australia to victory over Sri Lanka in the first Hobart Test yesterday, claiming six wickets in the final session for a thrilling win

The Sri Lankans had looked to be holding on for a draw until Siddle and Starc struck to secure Australia’s first win of the home season, after losing to South Africa 0-1 in the recent three-Test series.Siddle was named man of the match after his nine-wicket match haul.

Skipper Michael Clarke paid tribute to his lionhearted fast bowler Peter Siddle. The right-arm pacer was outstanding in Australia’s 137-run win over the Sri Lankans that finished late on the final day. “If everyone’s got the heart that (Siddle) has, we’ll get back to being No 1 in the world, no doubt,” praised Clarke.

Mitchell Starc celebrates a wicket in Hobart yesterday. Pic/AFP

Although left-armer Starc captured the last four Sri Lanka wickets to fall to finish with with five for 63, it was Siddle who claimed the huge wickets of skipper Mahela Jayawardene (19) and Kumar Sangakkara (63) to gain the early momentum.

“Siddle continues to lead our attack. I think he has done so for a while now and he loves the opportunity to be our number one strike bowler,” Clarke said.

“He really looks forward to the pressure situation. He doesn’t care if he opens the bowling, or bowls first change. It’s about helping the team have success.”

Siddle has been the rock of the Australian bowlers this season with injuries sidelining James Pattinson and Ben Hilfenhaus and will again be the key paceman in the second Boxing Day Test against Sri Lanka in Melbourne.

Peter Siddle. Pic/Getty images

Siddle was rested from the final Perth Test where the Proteas went on to win the series in Perth.

“The (Hobart) wicket probably helped us a little bit but we still had to go about our processes, bowling in partnerships and bowling our maidens to build up pressure,” Siddle said.

“As a group, I think we’ve been outstanding since lunch on the second day and we got our rewards.

“I said the other day that I got lucky and got the results and someone else would get it in the second innings and Starcy did today,” he said. 

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