Dambulla: There were reasons for Sri Lankan fans to cheer at the third ODI in Dambulla. But the result wasn’t one of them. On a day when Tillakaratne Dilshan was farewelled from one-day international cricket, and Dinesh Chandimal scored his fourth ODI hundred, Australia held on for a tense victory that gave them a 2-1 series lead with two to play – and gave David Warner a 100% success rate as an international captain.
Not that it was all smooth sailing. Chasing 227, Australia relatively cruised most of the way. At 187 for 4 they needed only 40 more runs, with George Bailey and Matthew Wade both well set, but suddenly Sri Lanka’s spinners came into the game. Four wickets fell in quick time and it was beginning to look like Australia might find a way to throw it away. It was Adam Zampa who struck the winning runs, a boundary behind point off Amila Aponso, and a single next ball.
It wasn’t any old single – it was cut in the air towards extra cover, where Angelo Mathews hurled himself into the air to try for a one-handed catch. The ball didn’t stick, and the result was sealed.Seekkuge Prasanna picked out deep midwicket off Zampa and Dilruwan Perera added 17 before chipping a catch to midwicket off Hastings, which left Chandimal nervously hoping the No.11 Amila Aponso could help him reach triple figures. Aponso was able to do so, and what he can muster with the ball will be one of the keys to whether Sri Lanka can defend this total.AGENCIES Sri Lanka’s Dinesh Chandimal celebrates as he scores a hundred against Australia while Mitchell Starc watches during their third one day international cricket match in Dambulla on Sunday.
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