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March 20, 2012
Australia's captain Shane Watson and the West Indies coach Ottis Gibson both believed their sides missed a golden opportunity to go up 2-1 in the series in St Vincent on Tuesday. The dramatic tie has left the contest at 1-1 ahead of the final two matches in St Lucia, and both camps were left with a hollow feeling after the game.
West Indies entered the final over needing seven runs for victory with one wicket in hand, and after a Darren Sammy boundary the scores were level with three balls to play. However, a brain-snap from Sammy's partner Kemar Roach caused a run-out from the next delivery, and Gibson said there were mixed feelings in the rooms after the match.
"We should have won today and we have quite a few disappointed boys in the dressing room at the moment," Gibson said. "But, look at it this way, we didn't lose the match and we are still in with a great chance of winning the series.
"Today, we clawed our way back from five down for just 78 runs and kept pace with the target. The lower order kept us in the game and credit must go to them for the way they played. The last five wickets gave us close to 150 runs so that's a really good effort. We keep showing the fight that we have spoken about for a long time and we are seeing signs of improvement. Our fielding effort and our bowling performance today were outstanding.
"The way we kept going and kept ourselves in the contest was good to see. The last time the Australians toured the West Indies [in 2008], at this stage, the series was already over. They went on to win 5-0. Now at this stage we are still in it with all to play for."
West Indies left plenty of work for their lower order after slipping to 78 for 5 in a chase of 221 and Watson said it was disappointing his side had not been able to close out the game at that stage. However, he said the Australians were relieved at the final run-out, which gave them some consolation.
"In the end, seven off the last over you're thinking it's one shot away," Watson said. "So at that moment when we got the run-out you do feel like it's a bit of a win. But you look back and probably even ten overs before that we should have closed out the game. It's mixed feelings."
Watson was at the centre of a key moment in the game when he bowled Andre Russell off a no-ball in the 40th over, which gave West Indies an important reprieve. Watson's frustration was compounded when he also bowled Russell off the free hit that followed, and he said he knew he had over-stepped when went back and checked his footmarks.
"It was a bit of a weird situation, really," he said. "I haven't actually bowled a no-ball in a game for, well, I can't remember the last time I bowled one. That was very disappointing, especially in that crucial time. To get a guy out, bowl him twice in two balls and get zero result out of it, and actually giving him a run, it's very disappointing."
"When I checked the footmarks I knew I had stepped over. That was not a good feeling, knowing where my spike-marks were. It's not good enough."
The teams will now move on to St Lucia for the last two one-day internationals, to be played on Friday and Sunday.
Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets hereFeeds: Brydon Coverdale
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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