Clint McKay stars as Australia win series

 

Clint McKay was the hero for Australia as the home side won the Commonwealth Bank Series with a 16-run win over Sri Lanka at the Adelaide Oval.

Australia's total appeared below par as none of the home batsmen got past 50 and the failure of the middle order meant there was no large target set for the tourists.

Rangana Herath and Farveez Maharoof led the way as they shared six wickets, Herath claiming three for 36 and Maharoof three for 40.

Warner and Wade put on 75 for the opening wicket before the former became the first of Maharoof's victims, caught behind by Kumar Sangakkara for 48.

Shane Watson, captaining the side in the absence of the injured Michael Clarke, contributed just 19 and Mike Hussey was run out for one as Australia stumbled.

And when Wade was caught behind trying to attack Herath, their situation worsened.

Peter Forrest, David Hussey and Dan Christian were unable to stem the tide before Lee and McKay put on 40 for the eighth wicket.

But the loss of McKay for 28 again put a brake on Australia's progress.

Lee was then joined by Xavier Doherty, but in the final over he clipped a ball from Nuwan Kulasekara on to his boot and then the edge of leg stump.

When Nathan Lyon fell for a duck off the next ball Australia were all out for 231 with three balls remaining.

Sri Lanka's reply started in unconvincing fashion as Lee induced an outside edge from the in-form Tillakaratne Dilshan who looped an easy catch to David Hussey.

Mahela Jayawardene and Sangakkara kept the scoreboard moving and had taken Sri Lanka towards 50 before Lee struck again - Sangakkara wafting outside off stump to give Watson a high catch in the slips.

McKay removed Dinesh Chandimal and Jayawardene with the total on 53 but Lahiru Thirimanne and Tharanga then steered Sri Lanka past the 100 mark.

Watson dismissed Thirimanne for 30 as he gave Warner a regulation if low catch at point to leave Sri Lanka on 113 for five.

McKay then snared Chamara Kapugedera and when Lee removed Kulasekara Sri Lanka were 172 for seven but it was Watson who got rid of the dangerous Tharanga.

Tharanga's resistance ended on 71 when he clipped Watson behind to Wade with the total on 204.

McKay bowled Herath for a duck and then claimed last man Lasith Malinga in his next over to earn the man of the match award as well as the match and series win for Australia.

Sri Lanka skipper Jayawardene said: "Initially if we were given 231 we would have taken it. They put a lot of pressure on us and it was one of those days.

"I am very proud of the boys against two quality teams (Australia and India).

"The objective is to rebuild for the next four years, we've learnt a lot and I'm proud of the youngsters."

Clarke said: "They are a much better team without me! I think we continue to see the strength of our domestic set up, getting guys ready for Australia."

PA

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