Former skipper Sanath Jayasuriya praised the Sri Lankan cricket team following their memorable ODI series win over Australia on Tuesday (June 21). The Lankans defeated the Aussies by four runs in Colombo in the fourth game of the five-match series.
Following the triumph, Sri Lanka registered their first bilateral ODI series win against Australia at home since 1992. Chasing 259 for victory, Australia came tantalizingly close to leveling the series, but eventually fell short in a last-ball thriller.
Reacting to the memorable win, Jayasuriya took to his official Twitter handle and hailed the hosts for their team effort. He wrote:
“Congratulations to the victorious Sri Lankan team for a fantastic series victory against the Aussi’s at home after 30 years ! A true team effort. Well done boys ! Feeling so emotional.”
Charith Asalanka was the star of the show for the Lankans, notching up his maiden one-day hundred. He smashed 110 off 106 balls while Dhananjaya de Silva chipped in with 60 off 61 as the hosts posted 258 while batting first.
In response, Australian opener David Warner scored 99 off 112 while Pat Cummins contributed 35 off 43 towards the end. Matthew Kuhnemann slapped Dasun Shanaka for three fours in the last over but was caught off the last ball as Sri Lanka sneaked home to a famous win.
Sri Lanka’s previous ODI series win over Australia at home came in September 1992, when they defeated their opponents 2-1 in a three-match series. Arjuna Ranatunga captainted the hosts in that series while Allan Border was leading Australia.
“This should be celebrated by the whole of Sri Lanka” - Dasun Shanaka on series win
Reacting to the memorable series win, Sri Lanka captain Dasun Shanaka described the victory as one that should be celebrated by the entire country. Speaking after the win, he commented:
"Not only for me, my teammates, Sri Lanka cricket, the whole country, this is much needed at the moment. I think this should be celebrated by the whole of Sri Lanka."
Sri Lanka has been battling a severe economic crisis over the past few months, which has thrown the country into turmoil.
Shanaka also defended the decision to bowl the last over of the match. He explained:
"After Chamika (Karunaratne) bowled that over (49th) we had a discussion about bowling a spinner but it was the right idea to challenge myself.”
The final ODI of the five-match series will be played at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Friday, June 24.
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