Australia's campaign ends in regret, but with hope for future

AS CHRIS Gayle danced, ''Gangnam Style'', to the end of Australia's World Twenty20 campaign, vanquished captain George Bailey insisted the team's semi-final finish was just the start of his career as a national leader, although Australia's 74-run loss meant it fell short of the goal it set when Bailey was appointed.

''It stings that we haven't won this tournament,'' the Tasmanian said.

''Australian cricket's very proud of what it's achieved and we haven't won a World Twenty20 tournament so that hurts.

''All you can do in Twenty20 is give yourself a chance to get to the knockout stages and then play your best cricket. We ticked the first bit. We just got outplayed tonight.''

The 30-year-old was appointed captain before he'd represented his country, with this tournament in mind. Some viewed the decision as an odd experiment for Australia and team performance chief Pat Howard admitted it could have backfired.

''It was quite a radical decision but it was about adapting the culture,'' Howard said. ''I note some people's comments about the Mike Brearley captaincy and I don't think that's fair, the bloke has shown he can play. He's demonstrated success as a captain and he's demonstrated an ability to lead.''


Bailey wants to continue in the job as he seeks to advance his career in the longer formats, although Australia doesn't play another Twenty20 international until January.

''I'm keen to play as much cricket for Australia as I can. I just said to the guys then I've really enjoyed the five weeks we've had together,'' he said.

''It's an eternity for a T20 team and it's the first time that I've felt it's become a team. In the last few months we've started to treat our T20 team like our one-day team and our Test team in the way we pick it. We're trying to look for that consistency with guys in their spots and starting to respect the way T20 is played.

''Absolutely I'd like to be a part of that. We've made mention of Bangladesh in 2014 as the next World Cup and because you play so few T20 cricket [games] that's where this team now begins to focus.''

Bailey's 63 in 29 balls was his best innings but it was a losing cause as the target of 206 was beyond even the West Indies' imaginings when they won the toss and batted.

Gayle's 75 off 41 balls set up the win in an innings of breathtaking power. At the start, though, he was happy to let Marlon Samuels, Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard soak up the pressure.

Once he got going Gayle took to the Australian bowlers, particularly Xavier Doherty whose last over to Gayle and Pollard was crunched for 25. The Jamaican celebrated with Gangnam Style moves inspired by the South Korean pop music and internet hit, which has become the signature dance for the West Indies, who now play Sri Lanka in the final.

''That's me. it depends what type of mood I'm in. I'll just do something crazy,'' said Gayle. ''Oh, we're definitely going to rock Sri Lanka.''

David Hussey was recalled at the expense of Glenn Maxwell, but the 35-year-old faces an uncertain future after a second-ball duck and two overs for 0-22.

''From one game you can't put a line through him. My innings was hollow and by the time he came out to bat the game was probably gone as well,'' Bailey said. ''He was the best player in the Big Bash last year so if he continues that form with his all-round ability, age isn't a factor. If he's still playing cricket in 2014, he's someone we'll look at.''