Charith Asalanka, Spinners Help Sri Lanka Clinch Historic ODI Series Against Australia
The left-handed Asalanka made 110 to guide Sri Lanka to 258 all out, a total that proved just enough to hand the hosts an unbeatable 3-1 lead in the five-match series
Charith Asalanka's maiden one-day international century and an inspired spin attack led Sri Lanka to a thrilling four-run series-clinching win over Australia on Tuesday. The left-handed Asalanka made 110 to guide Sri Lanka to 258 all out, a total that proved just enough to hand the hosts an unbeatable 3-1 lead in the five-match series in Colombo. Opener David Warner's 99 went in vain as Australia were bowled out for 254.
Earlier Asalanka rescued Sri Lanka from a precarious 34-3 as he put on 101 runs with Dhananjaya de Silva, who made 60. Australian bowlers kept coming back with crucial wickets but Asalanka reached his century to the cheers of a raucous home crowd that jumped to their feet to applaud the knock.
Wanindu Hasaranga played a useful cameo of 21 not out as he put together 34 runs for the eighth wicket with Asalanka.
Asalanka finally fell to Cummins and Australia soon wrapped up the innings in 49 overs with two run outs.
In reply, Australia lost skipper Aaron Finch for nought with Karunaratne trapping the opener lbw.
The usually attacking Warner held fort to try and grind down the opposition attack as he got Travis Head for company and the two stitched together 58 runs for the fifth wicket.
But the big moment came when the left-handed Warner missed out on his ton after getting stumped off de Silva as the home team celebrated the key wicket.
Cameron Green and Cummins attempted to turn the chase on in a 31-run stand but Vandersay bowled Green.
Cummins departed in the 49th over but Kuhnemann fought till the end before getting out on the final ball.
The final match is on Friday at the same venue.