Cameron White struck a remarkable 85 to set Australia on the road to victory yesterday after the Sri Lankan bowlers had seemed to have the upper hand in their World Twenty20 contest. Coming to the wicket at 30 for 4, White amassed his total off 49 balls in a total of 168 that proved far too good for Sri Lanka at the Kensington Oval.
Indeed, they only just managed to beat White's score as they were bowled out for 87. Fast bowler Mitchell Johnson did the damage, taking 3 for 15 as Kumar Sangakkara's team crumbled. The result sends Australia through to the semi-finals while Sri Lanka must beat India tomorrow to keep their hopes alive.
The Indians themselves are on the brink of elimination after Chris Gayle hit a typically whirlwind 98 in a 14-run win for West Indies. Gayle was smashed seven sixes and five fours before he was unluckily run out in the final over. The left-hander put on 80 with fellow opener Shivnarine Chanderpaul to form the basis of a competitive 169 for six.
A conservative Indian chase, however, never threatened the target and they finished on 155 for nine. "The batting just hasn't been up to expectations," admitted a disappointed India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni.