David Warner returns to form as Australia ease past Sri Lanka in T20 World Cup

Opener's fifty and wickets from leg-spinner Adam Zampa set up seven-wicket win in Dubai

Opener David Warner and leg-spinner Adam Zampa brought their 'A' game to the Dubai International Stadium on Thursday as Australia defeated Sri Lanka with ease.

Chasing 155 for victory in the Super 12 match, a quickfire 70-run opening stand between Warner (65) and captain Aaron Finch (37) helped the Aussies achieve their target in 17 overs and with seven wickets in hand.

Warner made his runs off 42 balls as Australia romped to their second successive win in Group 1 after their triumph over South Africa.

For Sri Lanka it was a first defeat in five games after they qualified for the Super 12s on the back of three successive wins in the qualifiers and then over Bangladesh in the Super 12 stage.

Both Australian openers hammered boundaries at will against spinners and fast bowlers in an explosive start of 70 off 41 balls, with Lahiru Kumara getting smashed for three boundaries and a six in one over.

Leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga got Finch against the run of play as the batsman chopped a googly onto his stumps.

Glenn Maxwell's promotion to number three did not bear results as he fell in Hasaranga's next over for five, but there was no stopping Warner.

The left-handed batsman, who survived a reprieve on 18 when wicketkeeper Kusal Perera dropped an easy catch off Dushmantha Chameera, reached his fifty in 31 balls.

Earlier, Sri Lanka’s batsmen put in a spirited performance – led by Bhanuka Rajapaksa’s unbeaten 33 - to post 154-6 in Dubai on Thursday.

Fast bowler Pat Cummins struck in the third over of the innings, but Charith Asalanka and Perera took the attack to the opposition. New man Asalanka hit bat back with three boundaries off Cummins as he and Perera – both scored 35 – added 63 for the second wicket.

Sri Lanka scored 64 runs off the first six overs of powerplay before leg-spinner Zampa (2-12) slowed the scoring rate down.

Zampa broke through with a googly to get Asalanka caught at backward square leg. Mitchell Starc then bowled Perera with a sizzling yorker in the next over as Australia made serious inroads.

Zampa took down Avishka Fernando and Starc sent back Hasaranga for four as Sri Lanka were 94-5 in the 13th over.

However, Rajapaksa soon launched a counter attack as he smashed Marcus Stoinis for two fours and a six in a 17-run over.

The left-handed Rajapaksa, who hit four fours and one six in his 26-ball knock, and captain Dasun Shanaka put on 40 off 32 balls.

Updated: October 28th 2021, 5:35 PM
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