Sri Lanka v Australia, 2nd ODI, Hambantota August 13, 2011

Hussey expects Sri Lanka fightback

ESPNcricinfo staff

Michael Hussey, the Australia batsman, expects Sri Lanka to bounce back strongly from their opening ODI loss to the visitors. Sri Lanka had won the two Twenty20 games but were at the wrong end of a seven-wicket defeat at Pallekele on August 10.

''It was very important to get off to a good start, particularly after losing both Twenty20s,'' Hussey told AAP. ''I think the Sri Lankan confidence was sky high, so it was important for us to start the series well. We've got to make sure that we are right on our game again because I'm sure the Sri Lankans will be coming back at us very hard.''

The second game will be played at Hambantota on Sunday and Sri Lanka could be boosted by the return of fast bowler Lasith Malinga, who missed the first ODI and both T20s with a back injury.

''He's [Malinga] an outstanding bowler,'' Hussey said. ''I think the reasons why he's so good is that he can take wickets up front with the new ball. His action does take a little bit of getting used to, so that makes him dangerous as well. He's got a very good slower ball, very good bouncer, and he also bowls very well with the old ball. One-day cricket is pretty much made for him and he'd be a vital part of their team.

''Complementing him with their very good spinners gives them a very well-rounded team and we're expecting them to really bounce back hard, so we've got to be ready for that and [get] right on top.''

Hussey missed the T20s and was unbeaten on two when Michael Clarke hit the winning runs in the first game, so he is raring to get into the action. ''I'm champing at the bit really. It was a bit tough to watch the Twenty20s. I would have loved to have been involved in that. [But] it was good to come over while those games were on just to get a bit of an idea of what their bowlers were doing and how the wickets were going to play. Things like that.''