Third Final Match

Australia v South Africa

At Sydney, January 27 (day/night). Australia won by 14 runs. Toss: Australia.

After losing their first five meetings with South Africa in this tournament, Australia did the improbable and beat them 2-1 in the finals. No one savoured the win more than Steve Waugh, who followed six successive failures with successive fifties and put on 102 with Ponting. Waugh likened the recovery to Australia's unforgettable back-from-the-dead World Cup win against West Indies at Mohali in 1996. After South Africa slipped 64 for three chasing 248, they always needed a special innings. Instead, when Australia wanted a wicket most, they always got one. As usual, South Africa fought all the way down to brazen No. 11 Paul Adams, who reverse-swept Warne and hit him inside-out over cover. That prompted Cronje to say: He's got some explaining to do … I have been trying that for four years and haven't managed it once.

Man of the Match: R. T. Ponting. Man of the Tournament: G. Kirsten. Attendance: 19,008.

© John Wisden & Co