Sri Lanka fell to another heavy defeat at the hands of their Australian counterparts in the 2nd ODI between the two sides that was held at the Rangiri Dambulla International Cricket Stadium today. With the 78 run win today, the visiting Southern Stars took a 2-0 lead in the 4 match series and also gained 2 points in the ICC Women’s Championship to gain automatic qualification to the Women’s World Cup in 2017.
Australian skipper Meg Lanning won the toss and had no hesitation in taking 1st lease of the wicket. Her decision proved to be a good one as opening batters Ellyse Villani and Nicole Bolton put on 81 runs for the 1st wicket, aided by a couple of missed chances. After Villani’s dismissal, Bolton brought up an elegant half century as she put on 67 for the 2nd wicket alongside Lanning. The Southern Stars were sitting pretty on 150/3 at the end of 30 overs and looked like they would get to a challenging total. However, the hosts’ spinners struck in quick succession to curb the run-rate, leaving the visitors in a spot of bother on 186/6 in 42 overs.
With the team in trouble against the spin, Vice-Captain Alex Blackwell stepped in to take the visitors to 254 in their 50 overs, remaining unbeaten on 56. Lower order batter Megan Schutt made a valuable contribution too, smashing 3 boundaries in here 18 run cameo.
Captain Chamari Atapattu was the standout with the ball for Sri Lanka, picking up 3 crucial wickets in the middle overs to stem the flow of runs. However, her fortune did not extend to her batting as she fell for her 2nd duck of the series. Holly Ferling, who wrecked the Sri Lankan batting line-up on Sunday, was on fire once again, as she picked up both openers for ducks to leave Sri Lanka struggling on 2/6 in 3 overs. A brief resistance was staged by Chamari Polgampola and Imalka Mendis but Kristen Beams returned to torment the Lankans with her leg spin. She picked up Mendis and Dilani Manodara off consecutive deliveries and then had debutant Harshitha Samarawickrama caught by the close in fielder to break the back of Sri Lanka’s chase.
Eshani Lokusooriya, took on the bowlers, smashing 4 boundaries but she was trapped in front by Beams as the leg spinner registered career best figure of 4/15 in her 10 overs. The visitors picked off the wickets on one end with Ellyse Perry getting in on the act to pick up Udeshika Prabodhani and Inoka Ranaweera in quick succession.
Chamari Polgampola made a fighting 50, the 3rd of her career, but could not prevent the loss as Sri Lanka fell short by 78 runs, making 176/9 in their allotted overs.