Sri Lanka join West Indies in Super Eight, Australia are out (Lead)

June 9th, 2009 - 3:54 am ICT by IANS  

Kumar Sangakkara Nottingham, June 9 (IANS) Sri Lanka joined West Indies in the Super Eight stage by packing off Australia from the World Twenty20 with a six-wicket win in a crucial Group C encounter at the Trent Bridge here Monday.
It was the world Test and ODI champions Australia’s second consecutive loss in Group C after being humiliated by West Indies in their first game.

Put into bat first, Australian bastmen failed to read mysterious spinner Ajantha Mendis (3/20) and debutant medium pacer Isuru Udana (2/47) but cameos from Mitchell Jhonson (28 not out) and Brett Lee (15) helped them post a challenging 159 for nine in 20 overs after a poor start.

Sri Lankan batsmen led by a calm and composed skipper Kumar Sangakkara (55 not out) and Tillakaratne Dilshan (53) achieved the target with six balls to spare.

The dimissal of Dilshan and Mahela Jayawardene (9) in quick succession put Sri Lanka in a spot of bother but, Sangakkara and Jehan Mubarak, who made a quickfire unbeaten 21 off 12 ball, steered them to home safely.

Australian fastbowlers looked rusty and lacked the penetrating power. Brett Lee proved expensive for his two for 39 from his four overs while Nathan Bracken, Shane Watson and Mitchell Jhonson were unimpressive.

Like their bowlers, the big hitting Australian batsmen failed to live up to expectaions despite getting starts. Captain Ricky Ponting could not convert his 25 to a big innings while David Hussey (28) also failed to carry on.

Lasith Malinga checked the run rate in the last few overs with his three for 36. But Jhonson and Lee played some big shots in the last five overs during which 65 runs came up as Australia put up a competitive total on board.

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