About the Match
After a humiliating test series loss, Australia made a comeback by winning the first one-day match against Sri Lanka by 3 wickets; the two teams will now face each other in the 2nd ODI at Colombo on 24th August. A sub-par performance by the Sri Lankan middle-order led to the hosts posting 227 runs on board while batting first; the Aussies overcame the Lankan spin attack to reach the target in a convincing show with 19 balls to spare. While the visitors have received a morale boost, Sri Lanka will not take this defeat lightly and could come back with more firepower on Wednesday.
Dinesh Chandimal yet again held the innings together to help post 227 runs with an unbeaten 80 from 118 deliveries; he got support from Kusal Mendis who scored 67 off 95 balls but the others in the middle-order collapsed like a pack of cards. Dilshan and Perera tried to keep the scoreboard ticking but they couldn’t impress much with the bat; spinners Dilruwan Perera and debutante Sandakan took 5 wickets between them but failed to stop the Aussies from scoring the winning runs.
Aponso also made his ODI debut and put up a good show taking a wicket with an economy of less than 3 runs per over; all-rounders like Thisara Perera and Siriwardana add depth to the attack while part-timers Dilshan and Mathews bring variety to the squad. Overall, Sri Lanka has a strong bowling contingent which is in good form.
The batting line-up features experienced batsmen like Dilshan, Mathews, Kusal Mendis, Chandimal and Kusal Perera; teenager Avishka Fernando is also waiting by the sidelines to make his ODI debut after a stellar performance in the U-19 England tour recently. The Lankans will draw inspiration from their recent emphatic win in the tests and try to make a comeback in the 2nd ODI here.
Mitchell Starc broke records to become the fastest to reach 100 ODI wickets as he claimed 3-32 in the first match against Sri Lanka; his heroics sent the Lankan middle-order tumbling and helped restrict the hosts to 227 runs. James Faulkner is also in tremendous form as he picked up 4-38 and demolished efforts by top-order and lower-order batsmen; Henriques and Hazlewood add depth to the pace attack and along with spinners Zampa and Travis Head, Australia will look forward to dominate the Lankans yet again.
Chasing 228, Finch and Smith kept their nerves together against the sharp spin attack from the opposition and steered the team towards victory with 56 and 58 runs respectively. George Bailey and Matthew Wade contributed well with the bat and can be strong assets in the middle-order.
While the bowling department has been performing consistently well to take regular wickets, the batting line-up also now seems motivated and can post big totals if batting first or chase with ease.
Australia has taken a 1-0 lead in this 5-match ODI series and will be eager to continue with their winning momentum; however, Sri Lanka which was phenomenal in the test matches, looks geared up to make a comeback and win this crucial match on Wednesday before the pressure gets to them