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Michael Clarke’s Australia must play with grace and right spirit

Michael Clarke-led Australia have bounced back in an impressive manner © Getty Images
Michael Clarke-led Australia have bounced back in an impressive manner © Getty Images

Sydney: Mar 9, 2014

A reputed Australian sports journalist has said that captain Michael Clarke can enjoy greater lasting satisfaction as a captain if he leads a team that plays with grace and in the right spirit.

Tim Lane said in his column for Sydney Morning Herald that that if there came a time when cricket had long ceased to be played, the game would instantly be understood upon the viewing of one significant innings.

Lane marvelled at the fact that much of what has transpired recently has been in total defiance of well-established form and pattern, with Alastair Cook-led England turning into a tough, resilient team that can win from tight spots and Graeme Smith-led South African players being more than a match for those of any other country.

Lane further said that no one could have imagined that the Clarke-led Australia team could have put a wrecking ball through these two world leaders with the help of the formerly-maligned Mitchell Johnson, controversial David Warner, rickety Ryan Harris, fidgety Stephen Smith, returning Brad Haddin and Chris Rogers.

Lane also said that in the postwar period there have been few Australian series outcomes that qualify as major upsets, adding that Clarke’s achievements as a batsman and captain were highlighted even more when he successfully passed the sternest test of his career while playing against South Africa.

Lane said that Clarke’s extraordinary success as leader offers a modern-day captaincy paradigm, adding that with the right support systems around him, and fuelled by the challenge, he has achieved both a personal and team triumph.

It now remains to be seen how long the sweetness of success will drive him on as he is about to turn 33 and Lane said that whichever course Clarke takes, he would do well to ponder that he will enjoy greater lasting satisfaction if he leads a team that plays in the right spirit.

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