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Last Updated: Thursday, 30 June, 2005, 17:58 GMT 18:58 UK
Ponting content with performance
Ricky Ponting
Captain Ricky Ponting said Australia were in confident mood ahead of the NatWest Series final against England after a six-wicket win over Bangladesh.

"It was a pretty good run chase in the end. We did it fairly comfortably with a couple of overs to spare," he said.

"It was a little bit worrying with the ball. We had them five for 70 or 80 and they managed to get to 250.

"A lot of credit goes to the Bangladesh batsmen. Through the middle of their innings, they played pretty well."

Ponting helped himself to 66 before Michael Clarke and Andrew Symonds provided the finishing touches in Australia's 254-4.

"It wasn't easy, a little bit of rain had got onto the wicket during the break and the ball moved around a bit early on.

"We lost three early ones as well, which put us on the back foot a little bit. We couldn't afford to take too many risks from there on.

"Michael and I just tried to shore things up and occupy the crease for a while. Unfortunately I got out near the end," he said.

Ponting insisted his side's shock defeat by Bangladesh at Cardiff earlier in the tournament was now totally out of their systems.

Shahriar Nafees
Teenager Nafees looked a bright prospect for Bangladesh

"We've moved on very well from there, I think. Our work ethic in training since then has been very good and we've carried that into the games."

Despite Clarke's unbeaten 80, the Man of the Match award went to Bangladesh opener Shahriar Nafees, who made 75 to rescue them after they had lost three wickets with only 19 on the board.

"Playing against the Aussies always motivates me. In the last game I scored 47 and today I wanted to stay there as long as possible and it worked for me.

"Those guys are very hard. They bring the best out of the opposition. That's why all teams want to win against the Aussies," the 19-year-old said.

Skipper Habibul Bashar said his side had showed "a lot of fight" and insisted there were plenty of positives to take out of the tour.

"We need a bit more confidence. If we get that, we'll do a lot better in the future.

"We've gained a lot of experience. We didn't start well in the Test matches but played pretty well in the one-day matches and the boys know, if you keep fighting, if you keep working, you can do it," he commented.

"Mohammad Ashraful had a good tour, Javed Omar and young Shahriar showed up very well.

"It's good to see the top order batsmen getting runs. That's where we've been lacking in the past and hopefully they can keep doing that in the next series against Sri Lanka."

Interview: Australia's Michael Clarke

Interview: Man-of-the-match, Bangladesh's Shahriar Nafees


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