PALLEKELE: Fast bowler Chamika Karunaratne led an inspired Sri Lankan attack to pull off a thrilling 26-run win over Australia in the rain-hit second One-day International on Thursday.
Chasing a rain-revised target of 216 in 43 overs, Australia suffered from regular wicket falls to get bowled out for 189 in 37.1 overs as Sri Lanka bounced back from their opening loss in the five-match series in Pallekele.
Karunaratne returned figures of 3-47 including Steve Smith, for 28, and Glenn Maxwell, for 30, and was ably supported by fellow quick Dushmantha Chameera who got the final batsman to bring the raucous home crowd to its feet.
Spinners Dhananjaya de Silva, Dunith Wellalage and Chameera took two wickets each.
De Silva also scored 34 with the bat and put on 61 runs for the third wicket with Kusal Mendis, who made 36, to guide Sri Lanka to 220 for nine when rain forced play to stop and late end the innings.
Pat Cummins returned figures of 4-35 but his effort went in vain.
Australia lost their openers Aaron Finch, on 14, and David Warner, on 37, to De Silva as the tourists faltered in their tricky chase on a seemingly tough pitch to bat.
Smith and Travis Head attempted to rebuild the innings and put together 31 runs before Karunaratne broke through.
Karunaratne got Smith for 28 and Wellalage’s two wickets of Head (23) and Marnus Labuchagne (18) in his two overs put the Aussies in trouble at 132-5.
Maxwell hit back to unsettle the bowlers in his brief stay at the wicket but finally mistimed a shot to get caught at cover off Karunaratne. He made 30 off 25 balls.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Alex Carey was run out for 15 as wheels came off the Australian chase.
SRI LANKA: D. Gunathilaka c Kuhnemann b Cummins 18 P. Nissanka c Carey b Kuhnemann 14 K. Mendis c and b Maxwell 36 D. de Silva c Carey b Cummins 34 C. Asalanka c Kuhnemann b Maxwell 13 D. Shanaka c Maxwell b Swepson 34 C. Karunaratne c Cummins b Kuhnemann 18 D. Wellalage b Cummins 20 J. Vandersay c Carey b Cummins 7 D. Chameera not out 7 M. Theekshana not out 11 EXTRAS (LB-5, W-3) 8 TOTAL (for nine wkts, 47.4 overs) 220 FALL OF WICKETS: 1-26 (Nissanka), 2-35 (Gunathilaka), 3-96 (De Silva), 4-108 (Mendis), 5-130 (Asalanka), 6-159 (Karunaratne), 7-172 (Shanaka), 8-198 (Vandersay). BOWLING: Hazlewood 7-1-26-0, Kuhnemann 10-0-48-2 (w1), Maxwell 10-2-35-2 (w1), Cummins 8.4-0-35-4, Swepson 10-0-58-1 (w1), Labuschagne 2-0-13-0.
AUSTRALIA: D. Warner b de Silva 37 A. Finch lbw de Silva 14 S. Smith c Theekshana b Karunaratne 28 T. Head c Assalanka b Wellalage 23 M. Labuschagne c Shanaka b Wellalage 18 A. Carey run out (Karunaratne/Mendis) 15 G. Maxwell c Shanaka b Karunaratne 30 P. Cummins c Wellalage b Chameera 4 M. Swepson b Karunaratne 2 M. Kuhnemann b Chameera 1 J. Hazlewood not out 4 EXTRAS (LB-5, W-8) 13 TOTAL (all out, 37.1 overs) 189 FALL OF WICKETS: 1-39 (Finch), 2-62 (Warner), 3-93 (Smith), 4-123 (Head), 5-132 (Labuschagne), 6-170 (Maxwell), 7-177 (Carey), 8-181 (Cummins), 9-185 (Swepson). BOWLING: Chameera 6.1-0-19-2 (1w), Theekshana 8-0-44-0 (2w), de Silva 6-0-26-0, Vandersay 5-0-23-0, Karunaratne 7-0-47-3 (3w), Wellalage 5-0-25-2. RESULT: Sri Lanka won by 26 runs (DLS method).
Published in Dawn,June 17th, 2022