Australia’s comprehensive win puts Sri Lanka in a tight spot

Australia's comprehensive win puts Sri Lanka in a tight spot

Australia’s comprehensive win puts Sri Lanka in a tight spot

Sri Lanka faced a tough loss against Australia in a crucial ICC World Cup match. Australia won by five wickets with 88 balls to spare in Lucknow on Monday. Sri Lanka chose to bat and started well, reaching 125 without losing any wickets in 21 overs. But their fortunes changed as they lost all their wickets for just 84 runs. Australia’s Adam Zampa was the star, taking four key wickets for 47 runs, including those of Sri Lanka’s captain Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama. Zampa earned the ICC Player of the Match award.

Sri Lanka managed to score only 209 runs before being all out in 43.3 overs, and Australia chased down the target, reaching 215/5 in 35.2 overs. This victory moved Australia ahead of Sri Lanka in the tournament standings, leaving the Lankan team in 9th place, just ahead of the Netherlands.

Australia faced some early resistance from Sri Lanka’s left-arm fast bowler, Dilshan Madhushanka, who bowled exceptionally, dismissing David Warner and Steven Smith in the first four overs. But opener Mitchell Marsh and Marnus Labuschagne’s partnership of 88 runs changed the game. They also took a quick wicket-keeper Kusal Mendis out with a brilliant catch from Chamika Karunaratne, who then ran out Marsh for a run-a-ball 51.

However, Sri Lanka’s bowler Lahiru Kumara struggled, conceding 47 runs in just four overs. Madhushanka was exceptional with figures of 3 wickets for 38 runs, but he didn’t get much support from the other bowlers. He took two wickets in his fourth over, a remarkable achievement.

Sri Lanka faced a challenging situation when batting first against Australia. They had a good start at 151-2, but their innings crumbled, and they were eventually bowled out for 209 runs in 43.3 overs on a difficult pitch.

Sri Lankan openers Pathum Nissanka and Kusal Perera built a strong partnership of 125 runs in 21 overs. However, David Warner’s exceptional catch dismissed Nissanka for 61 runs. Nissanka had a stroke of luck when he survived an LBW appeal earlier in the game when he was at 19 runs.

After Nissanka’s dismissal, Kusal Perera was bowled out by Pat Cummins. This brought Kusal Mendis and Sadeera Samarawickrama to the crease. David Warner once again made an outstanding catch to dismiss Kusal Mendis.

Australia’s Adam Zampa continued to trouble Sri Lanka, taking two more wickets. After a brief interruption due to rain, Zampa trapped Chamika Karunaratne and Maheesh Theekshana LBW, exposing Sri Lanka’s tailenders.

Charith Asalanka was left to fight alone and scored 25 runs off 39 balls before getting caught at deep mid-on. He was the only Sri Lankan batsman to reach double figures besides the openers.

A strong wind caused a brief pause in the match around the 41st over. Sri Lanka missed a chance to reach the 250-run mark if they had adapted to the pitch conditions and played out the full 50 overs. This could have added extra pressure on the Australian team, who would have had to bat under the lights on the slow pitch.

Chief scores:

Sri Lanka: 209 in 43.3 overs (Kusal Perera 78, Pathum Nissanka 61, Charith Asalanka 25, Adam Zampa 4/47, Pat Cummins 2/32, Mitchell Starc 2/43).

Australia: 215/5 in 35.2 overs (Josh Inglis 58, Mitchell Marsh 52, Marnus Labuschagne 40, Glenn Maxwell 31 n.o, Dilshan Madhushanka 3/38, Dunith Wellalage 1/53).

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