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Gilchrist back to what he does best

Adam Gilchrist burst back to his swashbuckling best by blasting a magnificent 116 as Australia crushed Sri Lanka by six wickets and wrapped up a berth in the finals of the VB series.
Gilchrist has been under intense pressure in the local media with some sections calling for him to be dropped down the batting order. After the match, he said it had been a tough time and he paid credit to his family, especially his wife Melinda.

"It's nice to get back in amongst some runs," he said. "It's a bit of a tough spell I've been going through - you've got a lot of friends and family that support you but in particular Mel has been a tower of strength for me.

"I've had a break, after having gone through a bit of a run of outs and feeling a bit flat. So to step back in and have to really take it on has been exciting and has got my energy back."

His brilliant century, which came up in only 88 balls, in partnership with fellow opener Simon Katich, carried Australia to 4 for 237 off 41 overs in reply to Sri Lanka's pedestrian 8 for 233 from 50 overs. Gilchrist, who had made just 58 runs in his last six one-day innings for Australia, showed obvious relief when he made his ton, punching the air and running towards his team-mates and family in the dressing rooms in celebration.

"I took a risk today off Chaminda [Vaas] a few times because I felt that those were the sort of conditions that required that risk in chasing that total," he said. "I've done that in previous games and those risks haven't paid off. So it's a fine line. We won a fantastic game of cricket, the bowlers bowled beautifully and we nearly got a bonus point."

Australia now have 18 points after six matches and are nine points clear of Sri Lanka who have also played six. South Africa, who play Sri Lanka in Perth on Tuesday, have eight points from four matches.