Quick-fire Australia romp past Scotland

Australia finished second in Pool A after Mitchell Starc bowled the World Cup co-hosts to a seven-wicket victory against Scotland in a match that lasted just 41 overs at the Bellerive Oval on Saturday.Starc (4-14) and Pat Cummis (3-42) set up Australia’s facile victory with hostile spells of pace bowling as Scotland collapsed to be all out for 130 in the 26th over.Opening the innings to give himself some valuable batting time, skipper Michael Clarke top-scored with a run-a-ball 47 as Australia chased down the target in the 16th over.Australia cruised in the chase but Shane Watson (24) and Clarke fell in successive overs before rain forced the players off the ground.When play resumed, David Warner and James Faulkner looked in a great hurry to finish the match before another rain intervention and they milked 41 runs in two overs to seal the team’s fourth win of the tournament.Warner blasted 21 runs off the six balls he faced while Faulkner plundered 16 off as many.Scotland finished their campaign with a sixth successive defeat.The pace and bounce Starc and his pace colleagues generated rattled the Scots with only four batsmen reaching double digits in an abject collapse that underlined the gulf in class separating the teams.The rain forecast for the match had prompted Clarke to field as he decided to try and skittle Scotland out first then rush through the chase, knowing a victory was needed to leapfrog Sri Lanka in the group standings.His bowlers did not let him down, dismissing the Scots with 24 of their allocated overs still remaining.Starc, who began with a maiden, tormented Kyle Coetzer before ending the scoreless opener’s 11-ball ordeal by getting him caught at third slip.Calum MacLeod hit five boundaries in his 22 but was done in by a short ball from Starc, which the opener slapped to Warner at backward point.Watson also used the short ball cleverly to remove captain Preston Mommsen, one of the five Scotland batsmen to fall for a duck, and the associate team lost their top order for 51 in the 12th over.Matt Machan (40) decided to counter-attack, hitting six boundaries before being dismissed by Cummins in a two-wicket over.Josh Davey (26) and Michael Leask (23 not out) put up some resistance down the order before slight drizzle forced the teams off the field after 25 overs.When they returned, Starc claimed two wickets in the next four balls to take his tournament tally to 16 and walked away with the man-of-the-match award.