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Player of the Match
Player of the Match

Record Maxwell fifty powers Australia sweep

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Record Maxwell fifty powers Australia sweep (0:56)

Glenn Maxwell's record 50 off 18 balls helped Australia secure the T20 sweep over Sri Lanka in Tillakaratne Dilshan's final international match (0:56)

Australia 130 for 6 (Maxwell 66, Warner 25, Dilshan 2-8, Pathirana 2-23) beat Sri Lanka 128 for 9 (Dhananjaya 62, Zampa 3-16, Faulkner 3-9) by four wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Sri Lanka had been changing their side every match and Australia had already sent several men home, but like a well-heeled theatre troupe, the players that remained delivered the same performance they seemed to have given many times over this series.

Sri Lanka won the toss again, batted again, did well for a little while, but mainly collapsed to a modest 128 for 9. Australia were disciplined with the ball, and athletic in the field, bruising at the top of their innings, a little shakier in the middle against spin, but got home with some comfort. The margin of this particular victory was four wickets, and they had 13 balls to spare - Glenn Maxwell providing the game's best innings again. If you have been following this series closely, though, this report may feel familiar.

One point of difference was that this was Tillakaratne Dilshan's final international. What didn't change, really, was his limited impact with the bat. He was out for one, edging an attempted cut off John Hastings to slip, before the stadium had even properly filled. Kusal Perera dazzled briefly before sending a top edge off James Faulkner to a running, diving David Warner, to be dismissed inside the Powerplay, for 22. That wicket brought two more in quick succession. Dinesh Chandimal and Kusal Mendis were both out in single figures, seven runs apart.

Steering clear of trouble at the other end, was a serene Dhananjaya de Silva, who had leant into a flowing cover drive off Mitchell Starc's fourth ball, and set about gracefully collecting runs into the outfield after that. He was light on his feet to spin, and was wise to the seamers' pace variations, hitting five fours in his 62 off 50 balls. One of the more memorable of his strokes was a delightfully late dab to third man, off Maxwell. At the other end, teammates played out a series of forgettable innings. Only de Silva and Kusal Perera made double figure scores.

Chamara Kapugedara and Thisara Perera were both out slogging Adam Zampa, and Seekkuge Prasanna holed out at long on, to Faulkner, and it was these two bowlers who each collected three wickets this time around. They were economical as well as penetrative - neither conceding 20 runs off their four overs. John Hastings was also effective taking two for 23, while Mitchell Starc ensured he would not go wicketless in a single innings of the tour, when he had de Silva caught at mid off in the final over of the innings.

The first over of Australia's response produced just two, but the remainder of the Powerplay was full of Maxwell and David Warner's pyrotechnics. They struck their first boundaries in Sachithra Senanayake's first over - Warner unleashing a particularly vicious reverse-sweep. Suranga Lakmal was carted for 13 in the next over, and Maxwell's reverse-slap for six made an appearance soon after, when he hit the game's first six off Sachith Pathirana.

The fifth and sixth overs, bowled by Senanayake and Thisara Perera, were Australia's most productive, yielding 20 and 19 respectively. Eighteen of those runs against Thisara came off four consecutive balls - Maxwell clubbing him over the deep square leg first up, then slapping three nonchalant fours.

The Powerplay brought 75 runs, and the openers had virtually made the game safe by the ninth over, when Sri Lanka removed Maxwell for the first time in two games. He played on to a full delivery, and the bowler, Seekkuge Prasanna delivered a graceless send-off, which left the departed Maxwell fuming.

That wicket, though, introduced a significant wobble to the innings. Pathirana claimed two wickets in the next over, and Faulkner was run out soon after. Australia needed fewer than 20 runs when Dilshan claimed his first wicket, and fewer than 10 when he took his second, but both breakthroughs prompted joy from the retiring star, and gave an adoring crowd a reason to chant his name. Travis Head finished the match with a slog-swept six that burst through the hands of Senanayake, at cow corner.

Australia 2nd innings Partnerships

WktRunsPlayers
1st93DA WarnerGJ Maxwell
2nd4MC HenriquesDA Warner
3rd1DA WarnerJP Faulkner
4th1MS WadeJP Faulkner
5th14UT KhawajaMS Wade
6th7MS WadeTM Head
7th10PM NevillTM Head