Sri Lanka struggle before rain interruption


Australia Test skipper Pat Cummins claimed four wickets as Sri Lanka crashed to 220 for 9 in 47.4 overs when rain came down in the second ODI of the five- match series in Pallekele.

Australia decided to bowl first after winning the toss. Sri Lanka openers who put on 115 runs for the first wicket two days ago, were sent back with the score just 35 by Cummins and debutant Matthew Kuhnemann. Kusal Mendis and Dhananjaya de Silva were involved in 61 runs stand for the third wicket looking to rebuild, but they failed to get going thereafter, as the partnership was broken despite severe fielding lapses by the Australians. 

De Silva was the first to go, dismissed in an unfortunate fashion when he misread a slower delivery from Josh Hazlewood. His attempted upper cut was anticipated by wicket keeper Alex Carey who jumped high to take a single-handed catch. He had a life on 30 when he was dropped by Travis Head off Cummins earlier.  

Mendis soon fell when he went for a sweep shot too early and got a toe-end that floated back to Maxwell.

Skipper Dasun Shanaka and Charith Asalanka looked to rebuild, but Asalanka hit one straight to Kuhnemann. Chamika Karunarathne and Shanaka looked good for a brief period as they made 29 from 28, but Karunarathne attempted an unnecessarily expansive stroke and was caught at long off by Pat Cummins off Kuhnemann, giving him his second wicket on debut. Shanaka once again felt victim to leg spin. This time he top-edged Mitchell Swepson and was caught for 34. 19-year-old Dunith Wellalage, batting for the first time, took 8 deliveries for his first international run and then played maiden against Glen Maxwell. He was 1 run off 14 when he freed his arms to smash a six and four, but could only add 20 as Sri Lanka were 220 for 9 in 47.4 overs when the rain came down.

Sri Lanka brought in Jeffery Vandersay for the injured Wanindu Hasaranga, while Australia made three changes bringing in Kuhnemann, Swepson and Travis Head in place of Jhye Richardson, injured Marcus Stoinis and Ashton Agar. 

By Anjana Kaluarachchi in Pallekele