James Faulkner: Ross Taylor and Grant Elliott were taking it away from us, to bowl New Zealand out for 183 was fantastic

It’s a moment you live for and nothing beats the feeling of winning the World Cup. For the fifth time in the history, Australia have done it and man-of-the-match in the final was James Faulkner, whose participation in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 was doubtful, after he suffered an injury just days before the tournament. His three wickets turned the match in Australia’s favour and post his heroic efforts, the 24-year-old Australian all-rounder spoke to the press.

 

Q: Limited overs cricket is dominated by the batsmen, but today man-of-the-match as well as man-of-the-series are both bowlers. How heartening is this fact?
James Faulkner (JF):  I suppose the obvious change to the rules was only four fielders outside the circle. So I don’t know how its worked out, but at the end of the day, both Mitch (Mitchell Starc), myself and the Australian cricket team are wrapped with what’s happened this afternoon and this evening, and yeah, that’s all I’ve got for that question, thank you.

 

Q: Given that both captains wanted to bat first, it looked like a good batting wicket, congratulations on the spell this morning. You seemed to have troubled all the initial Kiwi batsmen. The Kiwi bowlers didn’t seem to reap the same dividends. What made you stand out, and James, on your combat spell, as well?
JF: Yeah, I think what you said there was spot on. I think both captains obviously wanted to bat first in the final and set a decent chase. I thought at times New Zealand looked like they were going to get away from us. I thought Ross Taylor and Grant Elliott had an exceptional partnership considering what happened at the start, to pull things back for them, but at the end of the day, to bowl them out for 183 was fantastic.

 

I thought with the pressure obviously of the final, our batters batted exceptionally well and backed us up. No surprise that Michael got 50 and Smitty got 50 to get us home this evening.

Q: You have particularly mastered the art of bowling the back-of-the-hand slow ball. Today it worked quite well. Can you tell us how difficult it is, and what is the margin of error because if you get it wrong, you can probably be hit for runs.
JF:  I think purely I use it just as a change of pace and so the batters don’t get set. Obviously I bowl in the Powerplays and in the deaths, so if you’re bowling the same ball there’s more chance of you getting hit out of the park, I suppose. I suppose the change-up I use to obviously take wickets and also to change a batter’s swing when they’re trying to hit me to parts of the ground. Something I suppose sometimes doesn’t come out as good as what I wanted, but tonight it was okay. I only used it half a dozen times, but in the end it worked out well for us.

Q: James, you spoke out on the ground about how you won’t deny you were worried with that injury. I’m just wondering how you reflect on your summer and how it’s ultimately wound up.
JF:  I haven’t really reflected on it yet, but yeah, I obviously got asked about it at the presentation, and to be brutally honest, at the time I did it, I thought I was in big trouble. The first three, four, five days were quite tough, but at the end of the day the support staff were amazing around me to get me back on the park and they gave me every single opportunity to do so, and that came from the selectors, came from the senior members of the group that gave me every bit of confidence that I could get back on the park and contribute come crunch time in this tournament. I’m very grateful.

 

They could have easily wiped me out of the tournament, but I’m very grateful for the opportunity I’ve been given by the selectors and by the senior members and by the whole team to really buy into it, and look, at the end of the day, things have worked out. We’ve won a World Cup together, and everyone is really proud of that.

Courtesy: ICC