Finch blasts 181 as MCC XI outclass Rest of the World
Australian Aaron Finch blasted an unbeaten 181 in 145 balls to lift Marylebone Cricket Club to a seven-wicket win with 25 balls to spare over the Rest of the World at Lord's on Saturday.
Finch and MCC skipper Sachin Tendulkar (44) shared a stand of 107 for the first wicket.
Finch's 145-ball innings included 23 fours and six sixes as he overshadowed India discard Yuvraj Singh's attractive 132 for the Rest of the World.
Electing to bat first, Rest of World posted 293 for seven in their 50 overs but Finch's unbeaten century took MCC XI to 296 for three in 45.5 overs for an easy victory.
Earlier, Yuvraj stroked an entertaining 132 to power Rest of the World XI to a huge 293 for seven against the Sachin Tendulkar-led Marelybone Cricket Club (MCC) in the Lord's bi-centenary celebrations 50-over match.
Electing to bat in overcast conditions, the Shane Warne-led side were off to a horror start with Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal (4/45) bagging four wickets in his first spell before before Yuvraj and Paul Collingwood stitched together a 131-run sixth-wicket partnership to put the innings back on track.
The opening combo of Virender Sehwag (22) and Adam Gilchrist had given ROW a brisk 54-run start in 6.5 overs but the former was bowled by Brett Lee, who claimed two for 55.
Pacer Umar Gul sustained an injury and hobbled off after bowling two overs with the new ball.
Gilchrist displayed his trademark pull and cut shots as he scored 22 runs off 24 balls, including five fours before he was stumped off Ajmal.
The ace off-spinner then trapped Bangladesh's Tamim Iqbal leg before wicket for one and then scalped dangerman Kevin Pietersen, who was stumped for 10.
Ajmal bowled his Pakistan team mate Shahid Afridi for a two-ball duck to leave ROW tottering at 68 for five in the 12th over
However, Tendulkar took Ajmal off the attack after his third over, probably to give the crowd some entertainment in the exhibition tie.
Collingwood scored 40 runs off 64 balls, hitting three fours, but it was Yuvraj who really put on the fireworks. He brought up his half-century in the 25th over of the innings, off only 53 balls and including four boundaries as well as two sixes.
The Indian left-hander didn't let up, perhaps trying to make an impression on the Indian selectors, who will soon be gathering to select an ODI side for the ongoing England tour.
He brought up his hundred off 114 balls in the 45th over. In doing so, he put on 84 runs for the seventh wicket with Peter Siddle (34 not out).
He was finally dismissed off Tendulkar (1/33) in the penultimate over.
Rest of World captain Warne suffered a suspected broken hand after being struck by an unintentional beamer from former Australia team mate Lee. Warne, batting at the end of the innings, went on to face four more deliveries as his side amassed 293 for seven in their 50 overs.
Sachin Tendulkar made everyone at Lord's nostalgic with some delectable strokes even though he was playing out in the middle after more than six months.
It was vintage Tendulkar as he square drove pacer Peter Siddle and then hit him for a straight drive. A cover drive off Paul Collingwood was sheer class to delight the packed gathering at Lord's.
However, the master batsman got a little too cheeky with his stroke-making and it proved to be his undoing as he was bowled by Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan attempting a late cut after scoring a fluent 41 off 44 balls, laced with seven fours.
There was no stopping Finch, who continued his aggressive approach and put on 67 runs for the second wicket with Brian Lara.
The West Indian could not get going and departed after scoring 23 runs off 38 balls, in the 30th over.
Rest of the World captain Warne suffered a broken hand after being struck by an unintentional beamer from former Australia team mate Brett Lee.
Paceman Lee was quick to hold up his hand and offer his apologies after hitting the 44-year-old leg-spinning great, captaining the World XI, first ball.
"Sad news, X ray shows a broken hand. Very disappointing not to be out there playing," Warne said on his Twitter feed.
Indian batting icon Rahul Dravid failed with the bat and was bowled off the first delivery he faced, by Collingwood.
Collingwood claimed the big wickets of Lara and Dravid off successive deliveries to reduce MCC XI to 174 for three in the 30th over.
However, Finch steered his team to victory as he finished unbeaten on 181, while Shivnarine Chanderpaul made 37 not out as MCC XI cruised to 296 for three in 45.5 overs.