The men from down under have graced the paradise island for an exciting tour which will kick start with the 3 match Test series for the celebrated Warne-Murali Trophy. Let’s take a closer look at the numbers and the statistics between the two sides in the longest format of the game.
The first ever Test match between the two teams took place in 1983, as a part of Australia’s tour of Sri Lanka and the only Test was played at Asgiriya, Kandy. An experienced Australian outfit, led by Greg Chappell beat the home side, captained by Duleep Mendis, by a comfortable innings and 38 runs. Batting first, Australia scored 514/4 before declaration. Kepler Wessels dazzled with 141 before David Hookes braced the middle order with his 143. Graham Yallop made 98.
Responding to the mammoth total, Sri Lanka were bowled out for 271 and 205 respectively. The silver linings were Arjuna Ranatunga’s valiant 90 in the first innings which was followed by a 96 by Sidath Wettimuny in the second.
Sri Lanka vs Australia Head to Head Test Record –
- Played – 26
- Sri Lanka – 1
- Australia – 17
- Draw – 8
Recap of the last decade
The 2 match Test series in 2007/08 during Sri Lanka’s tour of Australia resulted in a 2-0 victory for the home side. Australia’s tour of Sri Lanka in 2011 included a 3 match Test series and it was won 1-0 by Australia, with the solitary result coming in Galle.
Sri Lanka travelled down under in 2012/13 during which the 3 match Test series ended with a 3-0 whitewash by Australia.
In the Lion’s Den
Since their first Test against Sri Lanka in 1983, Australia has played 13 Tests in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka vs Australia Head to Head Test Record in Sri Lanka –
- Played – 13
- Sri Lanka – 1
- Australia – 6
- Drawn – 6
Sri Lanka’s only Test win against Australia (Home or Away) came in 1999 at Kandy. The home side was led by Sanath Jayasuriya while Steve Waugh captained the strong visitors.
Batting first, Australia were bowled out for 188. Ricky Ponting became the lone fighter with his 96 while Muttiah Muralitharan claimed 4 for 63. Sri Lanka responded with 234 that was spearheaded by Aravinda de Silva’s 78.
The visitors were at the receiving end of another setback due to the horrific clash between Steve Waugh and Jason Gillespie that resulted in a broken nose for the skipper and a broken leg for the paceman. They were forced to stay out and adding insult to injury, the Australians were ceased at 140 with the short of two batsmen in the second essay.
Needing 95 to win, Sri Lanka reached the target with 6 wickets in hand, recording their first and only Test win against the powerhouse of cricket.
Pallekele International Stadium
The first Test will be kicked off at Pallekele Stadium in Kandy.
Sri Lanka’s Test record at Pallekele –
- Played – 4
- Won – 0
- Lost – 1
- Drawn – 3
The two sides have played one Test at the venue which ended in a draw in 2011.
Galle – a place of deceiving views
With the lovely Indian Ocean on two sides, bordering the famous Dutch Fort and town, Galle is one of the most picturesque venues in international cricket. But hidden behind the panoramic views, Galle has been a fortress for the Lions ever since it hosted its first Test in 1998.
Sri Lanka’s Test record at Galle –
- Played – 27
- Won – 15
- Lost – 6
- Drawn – 6
Sri Lanka vs Australia Test record at Galle –
- Played – 3
- Sri Lanka – 0
- Australia – 2
- Drawn – 1
SSC – Colombo
Sri Lanka’s Test record at the SSC –
- Played – 39
- Won – 18
- Lost – 7
- Drawn – 14
Sri Lanka and Australia have played 4 Tests at the SSC so far with the Aussies having won 2 of them and the rest being stalemates.
- Most runs – Michael Hussey (994 runs in 13 innings) (Avg. 110.44)
- Most runs for Sri Lanka – Mahela Jayawardene (969 runs in 29 innings) (Avg. 33.41)
- Most runs in Sri Lanka – Ricky Ponting (575 runs in 14 innings) (Avg. 44.23)
- Most runs for Sri Lanka (in SL) – Mahela Jayawardene (529 in 15 innings) (Avg. 35.26)
- Highest individual score – Michael Slater (219 at Perth, 1995)
- Highest individual score for Sri Lanka – Kumar Sangakkara (192 at Hobart, 2007)
- Highest individual score in Sri Lanka – Justin Langer (166 at SCC, 2004)
- Highest individual score for Sri Lanka (in SL) – Asanka Gurusingha (137 at SSC, 1992)
- Most wickets – Shane Warne (59 wickets in 24 innings) (Avg. 25.54)
- Most wickets for Sri Lanka – Muttiah Muralitharan (54 wickets in 19 innings) (Avg. 36.50)
- Most wickets in Sri Lanka – Muttiah Muralitharan (47 wickets in 14 innings) (Avg. 26.02)
- Best bowling – Michael Kasprowicz (7 for 39 at Darwin, 2004)
- Best bowling for Sri Lanka – Rangana Herath (7 for 157 at SSC, 2011)