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Tuesday, August 31, 1999 Published at 23:29 GMT 00:29 UK

Sport: Cricket

Aussies trounced by Sri Lanka

Victory is a big boost for Sri Lanka after World Cup woe

Underdogs Sri Lanka have thrashed world champions Australia by eight wickets to pull off a surprise victory in the final of the Aiwa Cup triangular tournament.

[ image: Mark Waugh assesses the damage done to his wicket by Muralitharan]
Mark Waugh assesses the damage done to his wicket by Muralitharan
Wicketkeeper Romesh Kaluwitharana pulverised the Australian attack with an unbeaten 95 off 116 balls under lights in Colombo.

The victory comes as a huge boost to Sri Lanka after their poor performances during the World Cup in England earlier this year.

And it meant Australia failed to equal England's record of being unbeaten in 12 consecutive one-day games.

Replying to Australia's total of 202, the home team got off to an electric start, with Australian fast bowler Glenn McGrath conceding 47 runs in his seven overs, one of which cost 20.

Flying start

Sri Lanka eventually passed Australia's 50-over total with 10 overs to spare, finishing on 208 for two when captain Sanath Jayasuriya ended the match by hitting Darren Lehmann for six over wide long-on.

"Sri Lanka took off to a flying start, and there was no pulling them back," said Australian captain Steve Waugh.

[ image: Jayasuriya leads his triumphant team on a lap of honour]
Jayasuriya leads his triumphant team on a lap of honour
Jayasuriya, who finished on 26 not out off 23 balls, said: "We had a young team, and everyone wanted to play well."

Kaluwitharana dominated the innings, sharing a partnership of 64 for the first wicket with Marvan Atapattu (24) and 110 for the second with Russel Arnold (47).

Earlier Australia's batsmen had struggled against Sri Lanka's spin bowlers after Waugh had chosen to bat first.

Backed up by excellent fielding, Sri Lanka restricted Australia to what was a modest score even on a slow wicket.

Man-of-the-series Adam Gilchrist had helped his team race to 37 off the first six overs, contributing an aggressive 21 off 16 balls.

Steve Waugh made a top score of 43 off 68 balls with three fours, and his brother Mark struck 32 off 52 balls with four fours.

But both were bowled by off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan, who finished with two for 36 off 10 overs.

Arnold and Jayasuriya picked up the last four wickets as Australia tried to battle it out, and only some lofted hits by tailenders Shane Warne and Jason Gillespie ensured they passed 200.


Australia innings:
A.Gilchrist c Jayawardene b Wickramasinghe 21
M.Waugh b Muralitharan 32
R.Ponting run out 18
D.Lehmann c and b Chandana 21
S.Waugh b Muralitharan 43
M.Bevan b Chandana 0
A.Symonds not out 22
S.Warne c Silva b Arnold 21
J.Gillespie b Arnold 14
D.Fleming st Kaluwitharana b Jayasuriya 0
G.McGrath st Kaluwitharana b Jayasuriya 1
Extras (lb-3 w-3 nb-3) 9
Total (all out, 50 overs) 202

Fall of wickets: 1-37 2-74 3-75 4-126 5-126 6-144 7-178 8-197 9-198

Bowling: Zoysa 7-0-31-0 (2nb, 1w), Arnold 8-0-42-2 (1w), Wickramasinghe 8-0-24-1, Muralitharan 10-1-36-2 (1nb), Chandana 10-0-33-2, Jayasuriya 7-0-33-2 (1w)

Sri Lanka innings:
M.Atapattu c Gilchrist b Fleming 24
R.Kaluwitharana not out 95
R.Arnold b Gillespie 47
S.Jayasuriya not out 26
Extras (lb-5 w-5 nb-6) 16
Total (for two wickets, 39.3 overs) 208

Fall of wickets: 1-64 2-174

Did not bat: M.Jayawardene, C.Silva, I de Saram, U.Chandana, P.Wickeremasinghe, M.Muralitharan, N.Zoysa

Bowling: McGrath 7-0-47-0 (4nb); Gillespie 9-0-37-1 (1nb, 2w); Fleming 7-1-28-1 (1w); Warne 8-0-46-0 (1w); Symonds 3-0-14-0; S.Waugh 3-0-16-0 (1w); Lehmann 1.3-0-13-0; Ponting 1-0-2-0 (1nb)

Result: Sri Lanka won by eight wickets

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