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Australia claim T20 series



Australia has claimed the T20 series against Sri Lanka, winning the second game of the series by three wickets to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in Pallekelle.


Having thrashed the home side by ten wickets in the opening game the night before at the same venue, Australia found the going tougher with the bat in a small chase, Matthew Wade's unbeaten run a ball 26 averting disaster having fallen to 7-99 chasing 125.


Earlier Sri Lanka limped to 9-124 after being sent in to bat by Australian captain Aaron Finch, Charith Asalanka (39) and Kusal Mendis (36) guiding the home side to a solid spot at 2-73 before another middle order collapse saw them lose 7-48.


Kane Richardson (4-30) and Jhye Richardson (3-26) shared seven wickets between them while the part time off-spin of Glenn Maxwell snared 2-18 from 3 overs, Mitchell Starc's absence with a finger injury not keenly felt in a fine bowling display.


Opening pair Finch and David Warner again got off to a flyer, racing to 0/33 inside 3 overs before Hasaranga De Silva broke through, removing Finch caught at cover for 24.


Hasaranga's leg spin was proving tough for Australia's middle order, losing regular wickets to keep Sri Lanka interested.


When De Silva removed Glenn Maxwell and Ashton Agar in consecutive balls Australia still needed 26 runs to win, Wade and Jhye Richardson steadying any nerves to guide Australia home with 13 balls to spare.


Wade was awarded man of the match for his knock, the Richardson's all having a big part to play in a solid series triumph for the reigning world cup champions.


Earlier in the corresponding A series Australia A defeated Sri Lanka A by seven wickets, Cameron Green making an unbeaten 119 to steer his team home in a big chase of 297.


The third and final T20I is on Saturday, before the ODI series commences on Tuesday.


IMAGE: Super Sport.