Aussies exit as Lanka advance

Pontings men tumble out after second defeat; Sangakkara spearheads coup

Aussies exit as Lanka advance

After putting Australia in to bat, the Lankans produced a tight bowling effort, even taking into account some expensive overs towards the end, to stop the opposition at 159 for nine.

The target was by no means easy, but the Lankans exploded with customary flair to take their team past the post losing just four wickets. Skipper Kumar Sangakkara and Tillakaratne Dilshan led the charge with sparkling half-centuries as the Lankans reached 160 for four with an over to spare. Australia had lost their first match to the West Indies.
The Australians are known to sport whiskers in times of crisis, but on the day the Lankans were the superior side, exploiting the indecisiveness of the Aussie batsmen. The first portent of a clumsy day for Australia came when David Warner was dismissed in the first over, giving a simple offering to Dilshan off Angelo Mathews.

It was just the start of some disturbing overs for the Australians. After a brisk partnership between Shane Watson and skipper Ricky Ponting for the second wicket that yielded 47 runs, they lost wickets in their effort to sustain the momentum. They lost the plot too as subsequent batsmen seemed to be in a dilemma whether to safeguard wickets or go for their shots straightway.

It needed the bravery of Mitchell Johnson and Brett Lee for Australia to touch respectability. Forgetting the performance of Ajantha Mendis would be an injustice as the spinner regained a bit of lost mystery in his bowling.

Mendis scalped the prize wickets of Ponting, Watson and Mike Hussey to leave the Aussie innings in disarray. Paceman Lasith Malinga too added to the worries of the Australians as he bowled with pace and cleverness when the situation demanded so.

The target of 160 could be a hard one to get especially against a side like Australia who thrive under pressure. But that quality was conspicuous by its absence on the evening as the Aussies resembled a bunch of aimless wanderers on the field unsure of how to stop the marauding Lankans.

The start of the Lankan innings indicated that it could turn out to be a tough day for Australians. Lee banged one short and Dilshan rocked back to cut it past point for four.
Even the early fall of Sanath Jayasuriya did not hinder Dilshan as he went about the task of dismantling the Aussie bowlers with some spanking shots. Dilshan and man of the match Sangakkara shared a quick 62-run alliance that took the Aussies out of the equation. Sangakkara was a picture of poise and grace as the left-hander stayed till the end and marshalled the middle order around him while ensuring a smooth Lankan victory.
DH News Service

SCORE BOARD 

AUSTRALIA

Watson lbw Mendis    22
(21b, 2x4, 1x4)
Warner c Dilshan b Mathews    0
(4b)
Ponting b Mendis    25
(15b, 5x4)
Haddin b Malinga    16
(17b, 1x6)
Clarke c&b Udana    11
(15b)
D Hussey c Jayasuriya b Udana    28
(22b, 1x4, 2x6)
M Hussey lbw Mendis    1
(5b)
Johnson (not out)    28
(13b, 2x4, 2x6)
Lee b Malinga15
(5b, 2x4, 1x6)
Hauritz c Sangakkara b Malinga    4
(3b, 1x4)
Bracken (not out)    4
(1b)
Extras (W-5)    5
Total (for 9 wkts, 20 overs)    159
Fall of wickets: 1-1 (Warner), 2-48 (Ponting), 3-59 (Watson), 4-74 (Haddin), 5-79 (Clarke), 6-94 (M Hussey), 7-135 (D Hussey), 8-151 (Lee), 9-155 (Hauritz).
Bowling: Angelo Mathews 2-0-10-1 (w-1), Sanath Jayasuriya 2-0-17-0, Isuru Udana 4-0-47-2 (w-2), Lasith Malinga 4-0-36-3 (w-2), A Mendis 4-0-20-3, M Muralitharan 4-0-29-0.
Scoring pattern: 5 overs: 47/1; 10: 70/3; 15: 94/6; end of innings: 159/9 in 20 overs.
Runs during Power Play: 1-6 overs: 48/2.

SRI LANKA

Dilshan b Clarke    53
(32b, 10x4)
Jayasuriya c Warner b Lee    2
(7b)
Sangakkara (not out)    55
(42b, 4x4, 2x6)
Jayawardene c Bracken b Hauritz    9
(12b)
Silva c Ponting b Lee    11
(11b, 1x4)
Mubarak (not out)    21
(12b, 1x4, 2x6)
Extras (LB-1, W-6, NB-2)    9
Total (for 4 wkts, 19 overs)    160
Fall of wickets: 1-19 (Jayasuriya), 2-81 (Dilshan), 3-98 (Jayawardene), 4-127 (Silva).
Bowling: Lee 4-0-39-2 (nb-2, w-3), Johnson 2-0-17-0 (w-2), Bracken 4-0-33-0 (w-1), Watson 2-0-24-0, Hauritz 4-0-27-1, Clarke 4-0-19-1.
Scoring pattern: 5 overs: 53/1; 10: 86/2; 15: 122/3; end of innings: 160/4 in 19 overs.
Runs during Power Play: 1-6: 62/1.

Comments (+)