SL 247 all out after 45.5 overs (de Silva 16, Pradeep 0)

Australia win by 87 runs. It looked close for a while after the openers gave SL a 115-run opening stand but then wickets and pressure got into the mix. From that point on, SL had no chance. They collapsed from 186/2 to 247 all out. Just not how anyone is going to beat the defending champions.

Pradeep c Carey b Pat Cummins 0(7)

SL 246/9 after 45 overs (de Silva 15, Pradeep 0)

Sri Lanka are delaying the inevitable but to see them not lose a wicket for a few overs is quite astonishing after that collapse of theirs.

SL 237/9 after 41.4 overs (de Silva 8)

WICKET! On air, they said, SL’s task just got tougher. No idea why they said that because this match has been over for a while.

Malinga c Khawaja b K Richardson 1(5)

SL 236/8 after 40 overs (de Silva 8)

WICKET! Can’t expect the tailenders to do what the top-order couldn’t. This task is a bit too difficult for the tail. Udana skies that and Finch takes a good catch while back pedalling. What a disappointing finish to the game... if only SL have kept their nerve...

Udana c Finch b K Richardson 8 (8, 4x1)

SL 222/7 after 38.1 overs (de Silva 3)

WICKET! Starc gets another one as Mendis throws his bat at a wide one. He only managed to get an edge. The pace bowler is on a hat-trick now. With this wicket, the match is as good as done.

Kusal Mendis c Carey b Starc 30 (37, 6x2)

SL 217/6 after 36.2 overs (Mendis 28)

WICKET! As good as over now. Perera comes in, hits a six off the first ball and is dismissed off the third ball. This is poor, poor cricket by the Lankans. They bowled and batted well to give themselves a chance and now, they are throwing it away. All hopes rest with Mendis.

Perera c Warner b Starc 7 (3, 6x1)

SL 209/5 after 36.2 overs (Mendis 27)

WICKET! Another wicket for Aus, more pressure for SL. After such a good start, SL are losing the plot here. They needed to take it deep but they are losing one wicket after another. Starc was too good for Siriwardana.

Siriwardana b Starc 3 (4)

SL 205/4 after 35.4 overs (Mendis 27)

WICKET! And this one will hurt SL. Mathews falls to the short ball down the leg side, gets a thin edge through to the keeper. Pat Cummins gets the wicket. This will only add to the pressure.

Mathews c Carey b Pat Cummins 9 (11, 4x2)

SL 193/3 after 34 overs (Mendis 19, Mathews 5)

Maxwell ends his spell with another good over. His ten overs cost Australia just 46 runs. He helped lower the SL run-rate and now Australia have the edge once again.

SL 186/3 after 32.1 overs (Mendis 17)

WICKET! The SL skipper’s brave innings comes to an end. A tame end though. The pressure got to him in the end. Short from Richardson and Karunaratne hit it straight to Maxwell at point. How will SL go from here?

Karunaratne c Maxwell b K Richardson 97 (108, 9x4)

SL 186/2 after 32 overs (Karunaratne 97, Mendis 17)

Finally, Mendis decides he has had enough. He is down the wicket to Maxwell and slams the offie for a straight six. Sri Lanka needed this as did Mendia, whose innings has been far too slow today. About time to get a move on.

SL 176/2 after 30 overs (Karunaratne 94, Mendis 9)

An old ODI convention is that you double your score at the 30-over mark by the time the innings ends. If SL do that, they win. They have wickets in hand and it will come down to how they handle the mounting pressure.

SL 168/2 after 28 overs (Karunaratne 89, Mendis 7)

Karunaratne is starting to look a little impatient now. He is looking for a few fours but they haven’t come his way and he needs to look at the bigger picture at this point. As Dhoni would say, ‘Take it deep.’

SL 159/2 after 26 overs (Karunaratne 83, Mendis 4)

In the last 5 overs, SL have scored 21 runs and lost 1 wicket. This is the dreaded slowdown and they need to fight through this period and keep the belief.

SL 153/2 after 23.5 overs (Karunaratne 82)

WICKET! Behrendorff dismisses Thirimanne. Edge through to the keeper but given how he was struggling, Australia might have preferred him staying at the wicket for a little longer.

Thirimanne c Carey b Behrendorff 16 (26, 4x1)

SL 145/1 after 23 overs (Karunaratne 81, Thirimanne 10)

Karunaratne has kept things flowing at a decent pace but Thirimanne has struggled to find a rhythm. Maxwell has been pretty accurate and controlled the flow of runs. Will Australian be wondering if they missed a trick by not playing Lyon or Zampa?

SL 139/1 after 21 overs (Karunaratne 78, Thirimanne 7)

This is now the SL skipper’s highest ODI knock and what a time he has picked to play it. But can he make it a ‘Big Daddy’ hundred like his Australian counterpart?

SL 131/1 after 19 overs (Karunaratne 73, Thirimanne 4)

Karunaratne is playing a gem of a knock here but SL now need him to play the guide and stay there for as long as possible. The longer they have wickets in hand, the more the pressure on Australia.

SL 122/1 after 17 overs (Karunaratne 66, Thirimanne 2)

Big challenge for SL now is to keep the momentum going. They have the start they wanted, now they need to keep their heads and wickets in the middle overs.

SL 115/1 after 15.3 overs (Karunaratne 61)

WICKET! Starc comes back into the attack and gets Australia the breakthrough. Kusal went for the big shot, missed and the ball hit the stumps. His enterprising knock has given Sri Lanka just the start they wanted.

Kusal Perera b Starc 52 (36, 5x4, 1x6)

SL 102/0 after 12 overs (Karunaratne 52, Kusal 48)

Off the second ball of the Maxwell over, there was a huge appeal for LBW against Karunaratne. The umpire turned it down right away but replays showed that it would have gone on to hit the stumps. Australia, unfortunately, had no reviews left.

SL 87/0 after 10 overs (Karunaratne 44, Kusal 42)

Australia have wasted their review as well now. Richardson and Carey thought there was a snick but there was nothing. Kusal is looking very dangerous but there might be a change of pace now that the fielding restrictions of the first 10 overs won’t apply.

SL 79/0 after 9 overs (Karunaratne 43, Kusal 35)

Big over:

What an over! Behrendorff has been taken to the cleaners. A six to start the over and a four to end it. Sri Lanka are on a roll here and the runs are flowing at this point.

SL 53/0 after 7 overs (Karunaratne 37, Kusal 15)

Just the start that Sri Lanka would have been hoping for. Karunaratne has ridden his luck a little and Australia will be a little worried at this point.

SL 40/0 after 6 overs (Karunaratne 25, Kusal 14)

Two contrasting fours by the Sri Lankan skipper and the runs are flowing again. One was a pull shot off a shortish delivery and the other was an inside edge that raced away to the fine leg boundary.

SL 30/0 after 4 overs (Karunaratne 15, Kusal 14)

The ball isn’t moving around too much – so Sri Lanka need to find a way past the new ball. If they can do that, they will believe they have a good chance. As huge as the Australian total is, in the T20 era, it isn’t impossible to achieve.

SL 24/0 after 2 overs (Karunaratne 10, Kusal 13)

Didn’t take long for Kusal to settle down – two pulls shots, two fours and he is off. Cummins was a bit too short and the left-hander took full advantage.

SL 12/0 after 1 over (Karunaratne 7, Kusal 4)

Here we go. Things could get very interesting if SL get off to a flyer and Kusal can certainly do that for them. Karunaratne is the batsmen they will look to anchor the innings.

SL 0/0 after 0 overs (Karunaratne 0, Kusal 0)

Dimuth Karunaratne and Kusal Perera are at the crease chasing 335 for victory

Aus 334/7 after 50 overs (Maxwell 46, Starc 5)

Sri Lanka might walk back into the dressing room thinking they did a good job in their last 5 overs, conceding just 32 runs and taking 3 wkts but the damage was done earlier. This total might not be as much as Australia would have liked but it should be enough for a weak Sri Lankan team.

Finch: “At the death, they bowled so good. We are still pretty happy with what we have.”

Aus 320/7 after 48.3 overs (Maxwell 37)

WICKET! Udana again. Fielding off his own bowling and hitting the stumps directly. Cummins well short of his crease. Australia have shot themselves in the foot here.

Pat Cummins run out (Udana) 0(1)

Aus 315/6 after 48.1 overs (Maxwell 33)

WICKET! Superb fielding by Udana. He got to the ball off his own fielding and hit the stumps directly.

Carey run out (Udana) 4 (3)

Aus 315/5 after 48 overs (Maxwell 33, Carey 4)

Another good over for Sri Lanka. In the last three overs, they have conceded just 15 runs. Marsh’s innings sucked the momentum out of the innings. Sri Lanka have bowled well but Australia’s thought process has been strange.

Aus 310/5 after 47 overs (Maxwell 31)

WICKET! Shaun Marsh never really got going today and Udana’s slower ball was too good for him. He found the fielder in the deep. In a way, Australia might be glad he got out.

Shaun Marsh c Siriwardana b Udana 3 (9)

Aus 306/4 after 46 overs (Maxwell 29, Marsh 2)

Good over by Malinga – just four off it. Maxwell took two off the two balls he faced but Marsh wasn’t able to do much with the four balls he faced.

Aus 302/4 after 45 overs (Maxwell 27, Marsh 1)

Pradeep has been taken to the cleaners by Maxwell and by the Australian batsmen in general. He has completed his 10 overs and has conceded 88 runs off them. The last over was a big one too with Maxwell laying into him.

Maxwell now has 27 runs off 10 balls. The Big Show has begun.

Aus 278/4 after 43.3 overs (Maxwell 4)

WICKET! Now, Smith is walking back. He was done in by a brilliant Malinga yorker.

Smith b Malinga 73 (59, 7x4, 1x6)

Aus 273/3 after 42.4 overs (Smith 72)

WICKET! Udana finally gets Finch with a well disguised back-of-the-hand slower ball. The Australian skipper didn’t pick it, it hit high on the bat and went high up in the air. Karunaratne took a good catch. This is the third highest score by an Australia at the World Cup – only Warner (178 vs Afg in 2015) and Mathew Hayden (158 vs WI in 2007) have scored more.

Finch c Karunaratne b Udana 153(132, 15x4, 5x6)

Aus 269/2 after 42 overs (Finch 152, Smith 69)

150 off 128. No stopping Finch today and Smith is joining the party too now. The total is hurtling towards 300 now.

Aus 255/2 after 41 overs (Finch 146, Smith 62)

Another big over. Smith started things off with two back-to-back fours and then Finch helped himself to a couple. And this is more like this. Australia need to keep attacking the bowling now. What good is it going to do to wonder what Maxwell could have done with such a platform. Finch’s 146 is the highest score by an Australian captain at the World Cup – he goes past Ponting’s 140* against India.

Aus 237/2 after 40 overs (Finch 137, Smith 53)

Big 13-run over might just kick off the gold rush. Finch is finding the boundary line again and that is helping but Sri Lanka will start to feel the heat now.

Aus 224/2 after 39 overs (Finch 122, Smith 51)

FIFTY for Smith! It is his 8th fifty in 10 World Cup games. What a player... but he needs to get a move on now. Australia should keep an eye on the NRR too. A 350-plus total could have really helped but that might be difficult to get now. Finch and Maxwell could be key in that sense.

Aus 218/2 after 38 overs (Finch 122, Smith 49)

Finch hitting a few more big shots but Smith is struggling to find the boundary. He is rotating the strike but is just not able to hit the ball a long way.

Aus 203/2 after 36 overs (Finch 111, Smith 45)

The runs keep coming but is this at the pace that Australia need to be looking to score them at? One of the batsmen needs to just go for it – both are set and should be seeing the ball pretty well.

Aus 195/2 after 35 overs (Finch 109, Smith 39)

Australia’s big-hitters couldn’t have asked for a better platform. They can just treat this as a T20 match and now go for it. This could get pretty ugly from this point on for Sri Lanka. Wickets are the key.

Aus 185/2 after 33 overs (Finch 102, Smith 36)

CENTURY FOR FINCH! 101 off 97. A superb knock. He got to the landmark with a superb six. He started the innings with a flurry of fours, slowed down and has now picked up the pace again. On the comms, Sangakkara says that perhaps Warner could learn a thing or two from Finch.

Aus 168/2 after 31 overs (Finch 94, Smith 30)

Finch almost dragged one back onto the stumps in the last over. The feet didn’t move and he just waved his bat around. Lucky to survive.

Aus 159/2 after 30 overs (Finch 93, Smith 22)

A superb platform but Australia will be a little disappointed with how this innings has gone after a good start. They haven’t been able to force the pace at all. What would England or India have done with the same kid of start? Or is there something in the wicket that we haven’t quite realised yet?

Aus 152/2 after 29 overs (Finch 91, Smith 18)


Finch deciding to go after de Silva for the first time and it paid off. The Australian skipper is scoring over a run-a-ball again now after a brief dip. The Aussies have scored 44 runs in the last 5 overs.

Aus 124/2 after 27 overs (Finch 71, Smith 11)

And the runs continue to flow again. Smith is going to be key against spin while Finch would like the ball to come onto the bat. Despite the good start, Sri Lanka have not allowed Australia to get away from them.

Aus 110/2 after 25 overs (Finch 67, Smith 2)

De Silva has turned this innings around on his own. After 6 overs, he has conceded just 15 runs and taken 2 wickets. His spell has resulted in the run-rate dropping and that has led to the wickets as well.

Aus 108/2 after 24 overs (Finch 66, Smith 1)

Six off the last ball for Finch and he had gone almost 40 balls without a hit to the boundary line. He needs to find some momentum in his innings again. He needed this.

Aus 100/2 after 23 overs (Finch 59)

WICKET! And some tight bowling earns Sri Lanka and de Silva another reward. Khawaja found the fielder in the deep with his sweep shot. Good catch by Udana.

Khawaja c Udana b Dhananjaya de Silva 10(20, 4x1)

Aus 97/1 after 22 overs (Finch 56, Khawaja 10)

Good session of play for Lanka. Australia have slowed down, Finch has slowed down and the wicket hasn’t helped matters as Khawaja is now looking to get set.

Aus 93/1 after 20 overs (Finch 54, Khawaja 8)

Good opportunity for Khawaja to make this opportunity to count. He had great success as an opener but now with Warner coming back into the mix, he hasn’t been able to coming batting at the top of the order. Now, he is in early and there is already a good platform.

Aus 83/1 after 18 overs (Finch 51, Khawaja 1)

FIFTY! The Australian skipper has slowed down a bit – he hasn’t hit a boundary since the end of the first Powerplay – but he has looked in control. Khawaja has joined him in the middle now.

Aus 80/1 after 16.1 overs (Warner 26, Finch 48)

WICKET! de Silva gets Warner with a ball that went on with the arm. The left-hander shaped up to cut but he had no room to play that shot. Big breakthrough for Sri Lanka. It also brings to an end a strange innings by Warner – he never quite got going. Is this what Australia want from Warner?

Warner b Dhananjaya de Silva 26(48, 2x4)

Aus 76/0 after 15 overs (Warner 25, Finch 46)

Dhananjaya de Silva into the attack and that is the first instance of spin today. But Sri Lanka needs something to happen for them. This is just too flat from them... they need a spark and looking at them on the field, one doesn’t quite know where it is going to come from.

Aus 73/0 after 14 overs (Warner 24, Finch 44)

The team batting first has won five of the last seven completed ODIs at The Oval and even though, it’s still early days, it looks like that streak might continue. With this start, the defending champions would be targetting a score in excess of 350 and that can’t be good news for Sri Lanka.

Aus 67/0 after 13 overs (Warner 22, Finch 40)

The Finch-Warner partnership rolls on and on. They have been solid during the World Cup, giving the Aussies a solid platform most times. A great opportunity for Finch to get a really big score though. Warner has been among the runs but Finch needs to make this start count.

Aus 63/0 after 12 overs (Warner 21, Finch 37)

Sri Lanka decided to review an LBW decision on the first ball and it was pretty close. But the umpire probably thought that the ball hit outside the off-stump and that might have saved Finch. Still, Sri Lanka retain the review.

Aus 57/0 after 11 overs (Warner 20, Finch 35)

This is too easy for Australia. Way too easy. The openers are playing smart cricket and sucking the life out of Sri Lanka.

Aus 53/0 after 10 overs (Warner 17, Finch 34)

Slow and steady wins the day... clearly. Finch has seven fours in his 34 – the outfield is magnificent and the sun is now out. Was it really a good decision to bowl first?

Aus 44/0 after 9 overs (Warner 16, Finch 26)

Steady over but it really has no impact on the game as such. If Australia gets a good start, Sri Lanka will be in big trouble – that much is certain. Well... some might argue, they are already off to a good start.

Aus 43/0 after 8 overs (Warner 15, Finch 26)

Kumar Sangakkara, on air, talking about how this Sri Lankan team was looking flat even before a ball was bowled and the feeling persists. A slightly edgy four to begin the over for Warner but relatively little from the Sri Lankan attack has looked even remotely testing.

Aus 33/0 after 7 overs (Warner 8, Finch 25)

Ten runs off the Malinga over – where he even randomly decided to come around the wicket. It didn’t help. Finch is striking it well and looking in control too. His 25 runs have come off 21 balls and are ensuring that Australia maintain a healthy run-rate.

Aus 23/0 after 6 overs (Warner 8, Finch 15)

Finch is going along at a decent clip – 15 runs off 15 balls but Warner [8 off 21] is really taking it easy. Almost feels like an extended net session for the left-hander. Getting his eye in for now and will accelerate later.

Aus 20/0 after 5 overs (Warner 6, Finch 14)

Australia’s openers are simply looking to play out Malinga and the new ball. If they manage to do that, we could have a 400 on the cards... Meanwhile, in happier news, Udana is back on the field.

Aus 16/0 after 3.4 overs (Warner 4, Finch 8)

And we have an injury timeout. Finch stroked another one through the leg-side and Udana, giving chase, crashed into the advertising boards. He immediately clutched his left shoulder and is being forced to go off for treatment.

Aus 12/0 after 3 overs (Warner 4, Finch 8)

Malinga isn’t bowling very quick but he manages to bowl a maiden. He has got Warner 4 times in ODIs and the Australian opener is being cautious. There is some swing around but not enough to worry the batsmen for now.

Aus 8/0 after 2 overs (Warner 4, Finch 8)

We have had three scoring shots in the match so far – all three running away for four on a lightning quick outfield. If it beats the fielders, it is gone.

2.58 pm: The National Anthems are done. Warner and Finch are making their way out...

2.56 pm: Usman Khawaja continues to feature for Australia today despite not quite fitting into in the playing XI... Aditya Chaturvedi had written about that. Read here.

2.50 pm: Warner said wife Candice had been his “rock” and the driving force behind his return to Australia duty.

The opener made 107 against Paksitan, his first hundred in Australia colours since an Ashes century against England during the 2017 Boxing Day Test at Melbourne. Both Warner and former captain Steve Smith were given 12-month bans by Cricket Australia following their roles in a ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.

“I was always coming back to international cricket if selected,” Warner told reporters after stumps in his first major press conference since his suspension expired. The thing that kept me going was my wife and kids. My wife is just, she’s just my rock. She’s unbelievable. She’s determined, disciplined, selfless,” the 32-year-old left-hander added.

“She’s a strong woman. And she got me out of bed a lot in those sort of first sort of 12 weeks, and got me back running and training hard as I could... She really nailed that into me.”

2.40 pm: No Nathan Coulter-Nile for Australia, no Suranga Lakmal for Sri Lanka.

Playing XIs

Australia XI: Aaron Finch (c), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Alex Carey (wk), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Kane Richardson, Jason Behrendorff

Sri Lanka XI: Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Lahiru Thirimanne, Kusal Perera (wk), Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Dhananjaya de Silva, Thisara Perera, Isuru Udana, Milinda Siriwardana, Nuwan Pradeep, Lasith Malinga

2.37 pm: Team news shortly... but first, this feels relevant right now as Finch loses another toss.

2.32 pm: TOSS NEWS - Sri Lanka have won the toss and opt to bowl first.

2.29 pm: Sri Lanka team manager Ashantha de Mel claimed the International Cricket Council have given certain World Cup teams preferential treatment at the expense of his side. Launching an angry attack on the ICC ahead of Sri Lanka’s match against holders Australia on Saturday, de Mel blasted the quality of pitches, practice facilities, transport and accommodation at the World Cup in England and Wales.

“This is a World Cup where the top ten countries are taking part and I feel that all the participants should be treated equally,” de Mel was quoted as saying by Sri Lankan newspaper Daily News on Friday. “The pitch being prepared for our match against Australia on Saturday here at the Oval is green. It is not sour grapes that we are complaining but it is very unfair on the part of the ICC that they prepare one type of wicket for certain teams and another type for others.”

De Mel criticised Sri Lanka’s team bus, saying it was more cramped than the double-decker vehicles provided to other teams. He also slammed the net facilities at Cardiff as “unsatisfactory” and the squad’s hotel in Bristol, which lacks a swimming pool.

2.25 pm: David Warner has overcome the challenges of reintegrating himself into the Australian team and with the explosive opener nearing his best, he could well end up as top scorer in this World Cup, feels assistant coach Ricky Ponting.

After struggling for rhythm in early matches, Warner came close to his damaging best in a match-winning knock of 107 off 111 balls against Pakistan on Wednesday in his fourth game back in Australian colours. The 32-year-old right-handed batsman sat out for one year, serving a ban imposed by the ICC on ball tampering charges in South Africa last year. He came out of that ban on March 29, along with his former captain Steve Smith.

Asked if other sides will now be more fearful of Warner, including Sri Lankans whom Australia face on Friday, Ponting said told

“I think they should. You know with David Warner at his best, if you miss your line and length then he’s going to make you pay. Every game is a different set of challenges for every player. Davey (Warner) capitalised on Pakistan not executing as well as they could have. We know against Sri Lanka, they’ll be well-planned. But Warner at his best is difficult to bowl to and I think he was back to somewhere near his best.”  

2.15 pm: First things first, the weather in London is sunny... yes, sunny!

2.10 pm: Hello all and welcome to the live blog of match no 20 at the 2019 World Cup. It’s Australia vs Sri Lanka at The Oval, London.

The last time Sri Lanka played a match in the World Cup was on June 4... their next two matches have been washed out without a ball being bowled. Not the ideal way to come into the match against defending champions.

Australia captain Aaron Finch has backed Mitchell Marsh to shine if injured all-rounder Marcus Stoinis is forced to pull out of the World Cup.

Stoinis suffered a side strain in Australia’s defeat against India last weekend and was sidelined when the holders beat Pakistan on Wednesday.

He has already been ruled out of Saturday’s match against Sri Lanka at The Oval and his involvement for the rest of the tournament will be decided in the next few days.

“Stoinis won’t be available again. He hasn’t bowled yet in his recovery over the last couple of days,” Finch told reporters on Friday.

“So having four days between this game and the next game, I think that will be the ideal time to really test him out and assess him. But I think over the next five, six days there will be a call made on that, just based on what he can and can’t do.

“We’ve seen him batting and running, no problem. Just he hasn’t tried to bowl yet. Just waiting for the injury to settle down a bit more.”

Sri Lanka skipper Dimuth Karunaratne said his team will have to work within their limitations in their pursuit for a knockout berth at the World Cup.

“We are a team with limited talent. If you compare us with a lot of other sides, we have major limitations,” Karunaratne was quoted as saying in ESPNcricinfo. “For example, the India side has someone who hits a hundred virtually in every match. In our team, we’ve only had one or two centurions all year.”