Michael Clarke stars in nail-biting finish as Australia edge out Sri Lanka

Michael Clarke stars in nail-biting finish as Australia edge out Sri Lanka

Michael Clarke led from the front as Australia beat Sri Lanka by five runs

Image taken by: Bimal Mirwani

Fans in Perth were treated to an absolutely thrilling game of cricket as Australia kept their cool to edge out Sri Lanka by five runs.

Australia, who were put in to bat first, got off to a terrible start, with four of their batsmen back in the pavilion, while having only 81 runs on the board.

Captain Michael Clarke, said: “We were probably 25-30 runs short on that wicket.”

However, Clarke played a good inning, making 57, as he was helped by rest of the middle order batsmen to direct Australia towards a decent total of 231.

Skipper Clarke, who was awarded the Man of the Match award, however was not happy. “I felt a little bogged down with the bat but tried to hang in there with the other guys.”

Sri Lanka’s bowlers proved to be highly effective as five of them each got two wickets.

The tourists, hoping to take advantage of Australia’s mediocre total, started off well, but none of their top order batsmen converted their starts into big scores. However, there was one exception. Angelo Matthews came to the crease and blitzed his way to 64, in an attempt to give Sri Lanka a chance to win.

He brought Sri Lanka within striking distance when they needed six runs off the last two deliveries, but Matthews lost his wicket and Sri Lanka lost the game.

The Australian bowlers’ bowled well in tandem as all of them picked up at least one wicket.

Sri Lanka Captain Mahela Jayawardene was upset that his team couldn’t finish off the job. “Great effort from Angelo, but we gave away too many wickets in the middle overs to lose our way. We did the hard work with the ball…they put a lot of pressure on our guys…we made too many mistakes, we didn’t deserve to win it.”

With a win against both challengers, Australia win play India again on the 12th of February at Adelaide and look to continue their dominant performance.

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