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‘We older farts just sat back and clapped’ – Michael Clarke credits youngsters for 2015 World Cup win

Smith, Warner and Maxwell were the top three run-scorers for Australia in WC 2015 while Mitchell Starc had most wickets in the tournament.

Michael Clarke (Photo by Ryan Pierse – CA/Cricket Australia/Getty Images)

It was on March 29, 2015 when Australia won their fifth World Cup and this time, the captain was Michael Clarke who retired on a high winning the silverware. The Men in Yellow, in front of a record crowd at the MCG, defeated their trans-tasman rivals by seven wickets in the fan to lay their hands on the trophy. And five years after the glory, Clarke has credited the youngsters for their incredible efforts in the mega event.

Australia’s World Cup squad in 2015 consisted of the likes of Mitchell Johnson, Brad Haddin, Shane Watson apart from Clarke who were nearing the end of their respective careers. However, the team was boasted by the likes of Steve Smith, David Warner, Glenn Maxwell and Mitchell Starc who were itching to make it big at the international level.

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While speaking to cricket.com.au, Michael Clarke recalled the message he had given to the team and how the team comprised of so many superstars in the tournament. “My message throughout the whole tournament was ‘play with freedom’. The thing about the squad we picked is we had so many superstars who wanted to be on the big stage. There was a lot of big egos on the team and they wanted the bigger game, bigger crowd, bigger moment, he said.

Young X-factor players won us the World Cup, says Michael Clarke

According to Michael Clarke, the youngsters like Smith, Maxwell, James Faulkner and others rode the team during the 2015 World Cup. His claims are not wrong as Steve Smith ended up scoring five consecutive half-centuries including the one in the final eventually scoring 402 runs at an average of 67. While Warner amassed 345 runs opening the innings, Maxwell took care of scoring runs quickly smashing 324 runs at an amazing strike-rate of 182.

Clarke also highlighted the preparation of the team ahead of the World Cup and how the youngster wanted to shine for the country when it mattered the most. “For me it was about our training and preparation being so important because then all I wanted to do was allow these x-factor players – Faulkner, Maxwell, Warner, Starc, Smith – these superstars to get on stage and show the world how good they are, and that’s what happened.

“Those young x-factor players won us that World Cup because they wanted to shine on the big stage, but they did the hard work to allow them to shine on the big stage. Us older farts, we just sat back and clapped. They were unbelievable, brilliant,” the former Aussie skipper further added.

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