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Cricket | ICC World Cup

Colombo © Gallo Images

Points shared as rain wins the day



Sri Lanka and Australia took a point each from their Group A clash on Saturday, after rain prevented a result in Colombo.

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The home side were 146/3 when heavy rain arrived in the 33rd over. And that was as far as the match went, with a soaked outfield and relentless rain condemning the game to a watery grave.

Sri Lankan captain Kumar Sangakkara had earlier won the toss and decided to get runs on the board on a ground that historically favours teams batting first.

Australia’s quick bowlers had other ideas, though, and Sri Lanka found themselves quite quickly two down. First to go was Tillakaratne Dilshan, who was caught at second slip off the bowling of Shaun Tait in the second over.

The dismissal followed a brief but fiery battle between the aggressive pair, which peaked two balls earlier when the batsman pulled away just as Tait was about to deliver - something the bowler seemed to take personally and which resulted in the umpire stepping in to calm matters.

Dilshan’s opening partner Upul Tharanga did not survive much longer, as he fell to a brilliant Steve Smith catch in the seventh over.

Dilshan connected a lofted cut shot well, but backward point Smith, leaping at full stretch, somehow got a hand to it and clung on to give Brett Lee his first wicket.

That made the score 31/2, a far from ideal start from Sri Lanka.

Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene then set about cautiously rebuilding the innings, adding 44 before Jayawardene was run out for 23 after a slight hesitation taking a cheeky single.

Again Smith was the key man in the field, as he scored a direct hit on the stumps at the non-striker’s end.

No further wickets fell before the rain came, just as Sri Lanka were starting to get into their stride.

At that stage the impressive Sangakkara and Thilan Samaraweera had put on a careful 71, with Sangakkara having reached 73 not out.

Sadly for him and all the spectators in Colombo, there was no chance for him to make a century as rain eventually had the final say.

The result means that Pakistan remain at the top of the Group A table on six points, with Sri Lanka and Australia both one point behind.

Teams:

Sri Lanka – Tillakaratne Dilshan, Upul Tharanga, Kumar Sangakkara (capt & wk), Mahela Jayawardene, Thilan Samaraweera, Chamara Silva, Angelo Mathews, Rangana Herath, Lasith Malinga, Muttiah Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis

Australia – Shane Watson, Brad Haddin (wk), Ricky Ponting (capt), Michael Clarke, David Hussey, Cameron White, Steve Smith, Mitchell Johnson, Jason Krejza, Brett Lee, Shaun Tait

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