Ponting eases Aus to 2-0 lead over SL

Published: Monday, August 15, 2011, 11:43 [IST]
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Ponting eases Aus to 2-0 lead over SL

Hambantota, Aug 15: Australia cruised to an easy victory against Sri Lanka in the second one-dayer of the tour by 8 wickets with 70 balls to spare. After restricting the hosts to a paltry to 208, thanks largely to a 3/35 from Doug Bollinger, former captain Ricky Ponting played a fine hand of 90 to guide his side to victory and 2-0 lead in the 5-match series.

Winning the toss and opting to bat first, Sri Lanka seemed to have given their innings a decent enough start, till Aussie paceman Brett Lee struck to remove Tillakaratene Dilshan for 24. Fellow opener Upul Tharanga followed him back soon with Mitchell Johnson dismissing him, as the score read 41/2.

Then Kumar Sangakkara stayed firm even as off-break Xavier Doherty foxed Mahela Jayawardene for 17. When David Hussey caused Sangakkara's demise for 54, the score read a precarious 140/5 in the 37th over. But Angelo Mathews and Nuwan Kulasekara prevented a latter order collapse with 35 and 34 respectively, to take their side to 208 in 49.3 overs.

In response, Australia suffered a stutter as Kulasekara had Haddin caught behind for 7 with the score at 10/1. Surviving opener Shane Watson immediately reversed the pressure by blasting 43 off 51 balls before Lasith Malinga saw the back of him. With Australia's score at 104/2 in 19.5 overs, Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke developed a steady and ultimately, unbreakable stand of 107, with the former not out on 90 and the latter on 58. Sri Lanka were at the receiving end of another crushing defeat, now burdened with the task of keeping the series alive...

Oneindia Cricket

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