Cricket News By TODAYLIVESCORE.INFO - Warner, Zampa help Australia ease past Sri Lanka. Warner top scored with 65 in the chase
Warner top scored with 65 in the chase
In a nutshell
Australia found a way past Sri Lanka's aggressive batting and bowling in Dubai to bring up their second consecutive win in the Super 12. While Adam Zampa and Mitchell Starc did the trick with the ball in the middle overs, it was David Warner later with the bat who scored a quick 31-ball fifty on a good Dubai pitch and set Australia up for a comfortable seven-wicket win.
Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 154/6 in 20 overs (Charith Asalanka 35, Kusal Perera 35; Adam Zampa 2-12, Mitchell Starc 2-27) lost to Australia 155/3 in 17 overs (David Warner 65; Wanindu Hasaranga 2-22) by 7 wickets
How good was Warner?
As good as he's looked in a while. Coming in without much cricket after a difficult last few weeks, Warner found his touch in Dubai with a reverse-sweep off Maheesh Theekshana. It wasn't a shot exactly off the middle of the bat but his intentions in the first over of spin were clear. A little while later, the challenge of Dushmantha Chameera and Lahiru Kumara, and their 140-150 kph thunderbolts, weren't enough for either Warner or Finch, both of whom charged at the bowler and hit the ball on the up, adding 63 runs in the powerplay. Kumara's first over went for 20 runs and that set the tone very early for Australia.
Warner falls but Australia get home
Warner kept going at one end despite losing Glenn Maxwell and Aaron Finch at the other end, both of whom falling to Hasaranga's spin. Warner hit 10 fours in all, going at a strike-rate of around 155, and set up the win, even though he couldn't be there to see them home. Warner fell for a 42-ball, 65 trying to up the ante but Steven Smith and Marcus Stoinis got the job done with a few attractive strokes, and with 3 overs to spare.
The Adam Zampa inflection point
It was a quick start for Sri Lanka. Pat Cummins had managed to get rid of Pathum Nissanka early but Charith Asalanka made sure that it hardly mattered, looking in great touch again as Sri Lanka finished the powerplay at 53/1. But the game changed when Adam Zampa came on to bowl in the 8th over, the legspinner finishing with 2 for 12. He first had Asalanka caught in the deep off a googly and then had Avishka Fernando departing to a poor shot.
Starc joins the party
With Zampa holding one end, it helped further that Mitchell Starc had found his rhythm at the other end, bowling yorkers at will and getting Kusal Perera with the best of the lot. Hasaranga then chased at an away-going delivery and edged behind, as Sri Lanka went from 78/1 to 94/5 in 2.4 overs. That collapse hurt Sri Lanka and despite Bhanuka Rajapaksa's 26-ball 33* towards the end, Sri Lanka managed a below-par 154 on the board.
Australia hardly put a foot wrong…. …except that one time when David Warner couldn't get on top of a fast, short ball from Chameera and edged behind, only for Perera to drop a simple catch. In contrast, Australia caught everything and were phenomenal fielding in the deep, despite Dubai's ring light being a challenge. Sri Lanka's bowlers were also guilty of being too predictable with the cutters and both Warner and Finch were able to line them up pretty easily.
Australia will now face England on October 30 at this very venue while Sri Lanka travel to Sharjah to take on South Africa on the same day.