Australia beat West Indies by 39 runs
CANBERRA, Australia – Shane Watson celebrated his return to international cricket with a sparkling innings of 122 to drive Australia to a 39-run victory over West Indies in the third One-Dayer and an unassailable 3-0 series lead.
The 31-year-old opener's 111-ball knock on Wednesday helped Australia to 329 for seven in their 50 overs and West Indies gave a great chase and had a chance of reaching the big victory target before James Faulkner (4-48) polished them off for 290 with 15 balls to spare.
Darren Bravo top scored on his 24th birthday with 86 for West Indies, who will be playing only for pride in the remaining two matches in Sydney and Melbourne after a third defeat.
It was the first ODI ever played in the nation’s capital and the Manuka Oval track certainly gave the batsmen plenty of opportunity to score runs.
Watson, who missed much of the domestic season through injury, reached his seventh ODI century in 102 balls and then conjured up two fours and two sixes in the next nine balls before holing out to Kieron Pollard at backward square leg.
Phil Hughes offered able support with 86 runs before being caught behind off the bowling of Darren Sammy, while the innings of Glenn Maxwell (4) and George Bailey (44) were both ended by stunning leaping catches from Pollard on the boundary.
West Indies started their run-chase at a slow pace but soon picked up with typical flourish to match Australia's run rate at around the 30 over mark.
Left-arm seamer Faulkner made two crucial interventions, however, the first when he bowled dangerman Chris Gayle (2) and Darren Bravo in the space of four balls to leave West Indies at 215-5.
He returned to end the match by claiming the wickets of Sunil Narine (1) and Darren Sammy (8) in three balls. All four of his victims in the match were bowled.
AUSTRALIA 329 for seven off 50 overs (Shane Watson 122, Phil Hughes 86, George Bailey 44, Aaron Finch 38; Darren Sammy 2-49, Sunil Narine 2-51). WEST INDIES 290 all out off 47.3 overs (Darren Bravo 86, Dwayne Bravo 51, Kieran Powell 47, Andre Russell 43; James Faulkner 4-48, Clint McKay 2-62).