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Last Updated: Monday, 25 September 2006, 06:59 GMT 07:59 UK
Aussies focus on Trophy challenge
Ricky Ponting
Ponting wants to be the first Aussie skipper to win the Champions Trophy
Australia have set their sights on lifting the ICC Champions Trophy after beating West Indies in the final of the triangular tournament in Kuala Lumpur.

"It's the second biggest one-day tournament in the world and it is one that has eluded Australia," said skipper Ricky Ponting.

"We definitely have the squad to challenge seriously this year.

"We've played some good cricket in Indian conditions before, so we can go there now with confidence."

The match against West Indies was an anti-climax as seamers Brett Lee (4-24), Nathan Bracken (3-15) and Shane Watson (2-30) tore through their batting line-up to bowl them out for just 113.

It gave Australia victory by 127 runs and Lee was named Man of the Series after taking 12 wickets in three games at a cost of just nine runs each.

Ponting, however, believes there is room for improvement from his team when the Champions Trophy gets under way next month.

"After not playing for four months, I think it's fair to say none of us are yet at the level to play our best cricket.

"But we knew that and we have given ourselves a bit of time to get used to the tempo and to have some time in the middle," he said.

"If each guy looks after himself and keeps trying to make themselves better day in and day out, then we will got a long way in the Champions Trophy."

Australia took 18 players to Malaysia for the tournament and Ponting again stressed the importance of their experimentation.

"It's been a really good exercise. Having had a look at a few extra players in different roles, we have lots of different bases covered for the Champions Trophy," he added.

They will play their opening Trophy game against one of the four teams involved in pre-qualifying - West Indies, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe - in Mumbai (Bombay) on 18 October.

They will then take on England at Jaipur three days later before facing hosts India in their final group match at Mohali on 29 October.



SEE ALSO
Australia crush Windies in final
24 Sep 06 |  Cricket
ICC Champions Trophy 2006
27 Apr 06 |  Cricket


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