Australia Defeats Sri Lanka To Win CB Series
Australia has won the triangular Commonwealth Bank series after a 16-run victory over Sri Lanka sealed a 2-1 final victory with Clint McKay the hero of the decisive game three.
The Victorian bowler played his part in helping Australia limp to a total of 231, with a late innings of 28, after they had been 7-177. McKay then went on to claim 5-28 off 9.5 overs as Australia bowled out Sri Lanka for 215 from 48.5 overs.
Australia’s total of 231 hadn’t appeared to be enough, however McKay and part-time bowlers Shane Watson and Dan Christian produced economic performances to restrict the frustrated Sri Lankans.
In a match which saw only one half-century, Matthew Wade (49) and David Warner (48) had got Australia off to a good start to be 1-115, however the middle order let it slip, with the tail having to get the Aussies past 200.
The Australian bowlers again stepped up with Sri Lanka unable to chase down the total, slipping to 4-53 after losing key batsmen Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardena and Tillakaratne Dilshan early. Upal Thuranga hit 71 to try and revive Sri Lanka’s innings but when the economical Watson dismissed him it was curtains for the visitors.
Acting Australia captain Watson (who ended up with figures of 2-13 off 7 overs) said: “After getting 231 we knew we were going to have to bowl and field extremely well to defend that and we certainly did that through the whole 48-49 overs. That’s what we’ve been talking about, to actually put it all together, and we were able to do that and that is very satisfying.
“We didn’t always bowl to our plans over the last couple of games; in the first final in Brisbane we let it slip a bit, and nearly lost that game. So we needed an all-round bowling performance. We also needed a good fielding performance to keep the intensity throughout the 50 overs. It is brilliant to see that when the guys really set their minds to it we can do it, and we set a standard tonight.”
Sri Lanka captain Jayawardena was happy with his side’s tour of Australia but was disappointed to fall short in the final.
He said: “I’m a hard marker. I’m quite happy and proud with the way the boys played. But we didn’t actually get the job done and win the tournament.”
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