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Warner regains form as Australia thrash Sri Lanka in T20 World Cup

DUBAI :David Warner's return to form was the icing on the cake as Australia thumped Sri Lanka by seven wickets on Thursday for their second successive victory at the Twenty20 World Cup.

Chasing the only major global trophy to elude them, Australia restricted Sri Lanka to 154-6 at the Dubai International Stadium.

When they returned, Warner, aided by some luck, made 65 as Australia chased down the target with three overs to spare to join Ashes rivals England as the only two teams in Group I with a perfect record.

Earlier, Finch won the toss and elected to field against 2014 world champions Sri Lanka.

Pat Cummins dismissed opener Pathum Nissanka early but Sri Lanka finished the six powerplay overs at 53-1 looking on course for a big total on a batting-friendly track.

For Australia, Adam Zampa (2-12) and Mitchell Starc (2-27) applied the brakes by claiming four wickets between them.

"Sri Lanka got away to a flyer with the bat and the way that Adam Zampa, in particular, was able to drag that back through the middle, and then Mitchell Starc to have a real impact ... he was fantastic," Australia captain Aaron Finch said.

Zampa was adjudged player-of-the-match for his tidy four overs which included 12 dot balls.


Charith Asalanka's unbeaten 80 in Sri Lanka's Super 12 opener against Bangladesh had secured a thrilling victory L1N2RK09A on Sunday.

The left-hander followed it up with an entertaining 35 before spinner Zampa cut short his stay.

Kusal Perera also made 35 but he fell to Starc immediately after hitting the left-arm quick for a massive six.

Avishka Fernando and Wanindu Hasaranga did not last long but Bhanuka Rajapaksa provided some fireworks in his unbeaten 33.

Rajapaksa hit Marcus Stoinis for two consecutive fours and followed it with a six but Sri Lanka could not make the most of their strong powerplay display.

"We got the start that we really needed but in the middle phase we were not able to capitalise," Sri Lanka captain Dasun Shanaka said. "I felt we were 25-30 runs short on that wicket."

Australia did even better in their first six overs cruising to 63 for no loss.

Finch made 37 before he and Glenn Maxwell, who could not justify his promotion in the batting order, fell in quick succession.

Warner's form had been a major concern for his team and the opener was on 18 when Perara dropped a regulation catch behind the stumps.

It proved a costly mistake as the left-hander went on to complete his fifty and fell only with Australia's victory in sight.

"We knew that spin was going to have such a big impact outside the powerplay ... so we knew we had to take a chance on their quicks and we got away with it, but Davey played a beautiful knock," added Finch.

Steve Smith, unbeaten on 28, also manoeuvred the ball around with characteristic deftness to frustrate Sri Lanka.

(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty; editing by Ken Ferris)

Source: Reuters


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