In a face saving Australian redemption by 41 runs at Adelaide, the larger result of Sri Lanka emerging the T20 champions in the 3-match contest by a margin of 2 wins, was the eventual trophy glitter euphoria for the Sri Lankan camp. If Australia saved face by breaking the drought after scoring 187 for 6 and bowling out Sri Lanka for 146 on the back of leg spinner A. Zampa’s 3 wickets, moreover the Sri Lankan hurrah of coming trumps up was the colourful silver lining.
For it was an insulating backyard triumph against an Aussie side that did boast of some regular players in the cast like A.J. Finch, J.P. Faulkner and Zampa. The Aussie media did make out that some of the big names were on duty elsewhere, but that it did contain T20 specialists on whom reliance was laid did underscore what a deserving series win Sri Lanka had wrested. For a win in the big taskmasters own backyard by all means is high stuff.
While Asela Gunaratne was named ‘Man of the Series’ for his two match winning knocks, wholly it was a magnificence for the new look Sri Lankan outfit skippered by Upul Tharanga. It was Tharanga’s third series success in instant cricket, the last two in T20s in South Africa and now Australia in the wake of ODI success in Zimbabwe before that.
The fact that the consistent Niroshan Dickwella was not there for the final game was a certain handicap Sri Lanka carried. Dickwella not being there was by a Code of Conduct ICC suspension that culminated from dissension against an incorrect caught behind decision given by umpire Simon Fry.
By Srian Obeyesekere
-The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Sri Lanka Cricket-