Australia v Sri Lanka, 2nd ODI, Adelaide

Thirimanne guides Sri Lanka to resounding win

The Report by Daniel Brettig

January 13, 2013

Comments: 220 | Text size: A | A

Sri Lanka 2 for 172 (Thirimanne 102*, Dilshan 51) beat Australia 170 (Haddin 50, Malinga 3-32) by 8 wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details


Angelo Mathews loads up to deliver, Australia v Sri Lanka, 2nd ODI, Adelaide, January 13, 2013
Angelo Mathews formed part of a tight Sri Lankan bowling unit at Adelaide Oval © Getty Images
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Sri Lanka's coach Graham Ford expected far better from his men after an abject display in the first ODI, and in Adelaide they duly delivered. A highly disciplined bowling ensemble laid bare Australian frailty against the seaming ball before Lahiru Thirimanne anchored a comfortable chase on a tacky pitch in the second match of the series at Adelaide Oval.

The visitors lost Upul Tharanga in the first over of their chase but were largely untroubled thereafter, as the surface eased after earlier offering helpful seam movement for Sri Lanka's bowlers. Thirimanne reached a deserved century by cutting Xavier Doherty backward of point for the winning runs with eight wickets and 59 balls to spare, having been accompanied for much of the pursuit by an uncharacteristically reserved Tillakaratne Dilshan.

Particular praise was also due to Nuwan Kulasekara and Angelo Mathews, who took the new balls and set Australia on the defensive by moving the ball just enough through the air and off the seam, while keeping the runs down. Lasith Malinga and Thisara Perera then followed up with wickets of their own. Named in place of the injured Dinesh Chandimal, the debut gloveman Kushal Perera kept wicket neatly and held four catches.

Besides their problems with seam friendly conditions reminiscent of England, Australia were discomforted further by Brad Haddin's struggles with an apparent hamstring strain, which began to affect him during the latter stages of a rearguard innings of 50 and then forced a regular dialogue with the team physio Alex Kountouris in the early overs of the evening session.

Eventually Haddin surrendered to the injury, leaving Phillip Hughes to take up duties as Australia's makeshift gloveman for the second time this summer. The hosts can expect their team to be significantly reinforced when the national selector John Inverarity names the squad for the next two matches of the series, having started well in Melbourne but fallen away badly in Adelaide.

After Tharanga's early departure to a Clint McKay delivery angled across him, Dilshan and Thirimanne played with good sense and shot selection. Dilshan had one LBW appeal by Doherty referred to the third umpire, but the television evidence proved too marginal for an overturned verdict.

Smart stats

  • Sri Lanka's win is their 15th against Australia in ODIs played in Australia. Seven of their 15 wins have come in matches played since November 2010.
  • The eight-wicket win is level with Sri Lanka's best performance against Australia in ODI chases. Three of their four eight-wicket wins have come in ODIs in Australia.
  • The number of balls remaining after the win (59) is the second-highest for Sri Lanka in ODIs against Australia played in Australia. The highest is 101 in Sydney in 2012.
  • Lahiru Thirimanne's century is only the fifth by a Sri Lankan batsman in a chase against Australia (second in Adelaide). Aravinda de Silva has scored two centuries in chases.
  • The 137-run stand between Thirimanne and Tillakaratne Dilshan is the second-highest second-wicket partnership for Sri Lanka against Australia. The highest is 163 between Sanath Jayasuriya and Kumar Sangakkara in Sydney in 2006.

They were not to be separated until only a further 34 runs were required. By that point Australia had lost Haddin and also the bowling of the debutant Kane Richardson, who followed up a first ball duck with the bat by suffering the ignominy of being drummed out of the bowling attack for repeatedly running on the pitch in his follow through. It is a problem that will require some technical work to correct.

The first indication that Australia were not at their sharpest came in the opening over when Aaron Finch clipped the ball straight to square leg and set off for a single - Phillip Hughes would have been out by yards had the ball found stumps or wicketkeeper. Fortunate there, Finch was to be out for his second low score in as many matches and again fell to a tentative stroke, pushing Mathews to short cover after he had nudged Ajantha Mendis into the wicketkeeper's gloves at the MCG.

Hughes struggled to find the fluency he had managed while making a century on debut, and was pinned in front of the stumps by Kulasekara, wasting Australia's only review on a ball that pitched in line and would have taken middle and off. David Hussey and George Bailey briefly steadied the innings in a stand of 39, but the stand-in captain's fortunate stay, punctuated by numerous edges, was ended when he pulled Malinga to midwicket where Thirimanne held a decent catch.

Steve Smith, brought in for Usman Khawaja, hinted at fluency during his brief stay but drove loosely at a Perera delivery that seamed back into him and was taken behind. To this point Hussey had looked the most composed of the batsmen, but his run out in another mix-up and a neat Mathews leg cutter to remove Glenn Maxwell, put Australia in deep trouble.

Cutting and Haddin resisted for 15 overs and 57 runs, the former showing glimpses of the batting skill he had demonstrated for Queensland over the past two summers. Eventually Malinga's pace and unique angle drew an edge from Cutting, and next ball his fellow debutant Richardson was flummoxed by a dipping slower ball and pinned LBW.

Clint McKay averted the hat-trick but then fell victim to a decision overturned for reasons known only to the third umpire Richard Kettleborough, for replays showed no solid evidence of an edge behind from Perera's bowling, and HotSpot was no more revealing.

The last man Doherty's arrival moved Haddin to swing a mighty six into the Members Stand. He picked out midwicket when trying to repeat the shot from Mendis, leaving the hosts with a sorry total that would quickly prove to be inadequate.

Innings Dot balls 4s 6s PP1 PP2 41-50 NB/Wides
Australia 196 14 2 21-2 20-2 (36-40) 30-2 (46.5) 0/4
Sri Lanka 143 17 1 32-1 26-0 (36-40) 4-0 (40.1) 0/2

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by LALITHKURUWITA on (January 16, 2013, 11:39 GMT)

Beating Aussie C team is not a big deal. But SL young guns got good experience which is the plus point I see. But Gabba is faastmen paradise. Remember what happened in 2010. If SL would not get trashed, it would be surprised.

Posted by MelbourneMiracle on (January 16, 2013, 6:02 GMT)

It is clearly evident that 3 veterans' days are numbered when we see the brave performance of the youngsters. Sanga's injury is a blessing in disguise. Mahela should take a call on his ODI career since he's not effective on seaming wickets anymore. Sanga & Dilshan may have a couple of years left in ODIs but I don't know how helpful it would be for the 2015 WC in AUZ and NZ since their reflexes not getting any faster. We never imagined that we would see players like Aravinda or Captains like Arjuna anymore but Sanga and Mahela proved that it was a myth. Similarly young guns will prove that they could replace Sanga and Mahela in time to come. Sanga and Mahela didn't become legends over night. Therefore it's high time to pass the baton to players like Anji, Lahiru, Chandimal, Akhila, Kushal and Dimuth before it is too late.

@gularan: the so-called Team India is not even pedestrian if they don't have dhoni. It is not a team. It is a single man's game for India

Posted by shamantha.guruge on (January 15, 2013, 17:20 GMT)

Good come back in sri lankan team. But still they want to consider about their open combination. I think best option is they want to give chance for dimuth or kusal, also sri lankan fast bowling in not good lvel rather than Australian but still sri lanka have good chance to win this series .

Posted by colombo_SL on (January 15, 2013, 10:34 GMT)

@gularan; & @ lukecannon; Australia was thrashed by Sri Lanka. Gularan was thrashed by lukecannon. Can understand the Gularan's desperation.

Posted by lukecannon on (January 15, 2013, 8:40 GMT)

gularan- That's what anybody would say after being thrashed. I understand how you are feeling bro. lol

Posted by gularan on (January 15, 2013, 7:39 GMT)

At last Sri lanka has found out where they stand against the Aussies viz ;they are on par with the Australian third string team. Ha! Ha! Ha ! Their euphoria will be very short lived when they get soundly thrashed by the Aussies in good old Brissie. It will be another excruciating and demoralising defeat for this very pedestrian team.

Posted by Tal_Botvinnik on (January 15, 2013, 5:17 GMT)

the young team is looking stronger than the old team with bhanuka,angelo perera,dickwella to come

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Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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