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Caught in the cubicle, Ricky promotes Clarke

Turns out Clarke's elevation to No 3 in the Australian lineup will be the butt of jokes in the years to come.

india Updated: Jan 22, 2007 13:03 IST

Turns out Michael Clarke's elevation from No 4 to No 3 in the Australian cricket lineup will be the butt of jokes in the years to come.

Australian captain Ricky Ponting surprisingly sent Clarke in to bat at No 3 against New Zealand on Sunday. Commentators wondered whether Ponting was trying to give Clarke, 25, more experience at the top of the order before the World Cup in the Caribbean in March and April.

But teammate Mike Hussey said on Monday that Ponting was meant to bat in his normal spot at the fall of the first wicket, but was caught with his pants down.

"It was a quick toilet break and he couldn't get his gear back on quickly enough," Hussey said. "It was a bit of an unfortunate situation.

"I don't want to go into it too much. I think you can ask him about it."

Ponting made just five runs batting in the unaccustomed position of No 4.

Clarke's 75 and Hussey's unbeaten 65 at No 6 guided Australia to a two-wicket win in yesterday's one-day international at the Sydney Cricket Ground, scoring 224-8 in reply to New Zealand's 218.

Australia has qualified for next month's best-of-three finals series with four wins in four matches.