Sri Lanka are back in ODI series after win in Adelaide, says Ian Harvey
Last Updated: January 13, 2013 12:31pm
Sri Lanka: Tourists can celebrate at last
Ian Harvey said Sri Lanka looked like a 'different team' after they put an end to a miserable run of results in Australia by winning the second ODI.
Lahiru Thirimanne (102) made his maiden international century by hitting the winning runs after Sri Lanka had restricted Australia to 170 in Adelaide.
"Australia thumped Sri Lanka in the first ODI but they've responded really well here. This series is well and truly alive."
Before the match the tourists had been thrashed 3-0 in the Test series and sunk by 107 runs in the first ODI but, after their victory on Sunday, Harvey told Sky Sports there's now all to play for in the five-match one day series.
"That was a lot better from Sri Lanka," said the former Australia all-rounder.
"After the first ODI Mahela Jayawardene must have sat them all down and said 'this isn't good enough, we need to turn this round,' and they've done that.
"Sri Lanka turned up looking like they wanted to play. They won the toss, which helped, but in the field they looked like a different team and earned a well-deserved win.
"Australia thumped them in the first ODI but they've responded really well here. This series is well and truly alive."
Jason Gillespie was also impressed with Sri Lanka and highlighted the performance of the bowlers who set the game up for Thirimanne and a cautious Tillakaratne Dilshan (51) to lead them to victory.
"I thought the Sri Lanka bowlers in the first 10 overs were excellent," said the ex-Australia quick.
"They're only medium pacers but they bowled good lines, they pitched the ball up and they forced mistakes from the Australian batsmen because the ball was just doing enough.
"They got rewarded for their length and got the batsmen to play attacking strokes off the front foot.
"The Australia bowlers probably let themselves down a bit, when it came to length, Clint McKay got the early wicket with a fuller delivery but for some reason or other the Australian bowlers went away from that from then on."
Harvey also applauded the efforts of Thirimanne and said the batsman will remember this match for a long time to come.
"Thirimanne was absolutely brilliant," he said. "What a way to go to your debut 100, hitting the winning runs and getting your side over the line.
"He'll take massive confidence from knowing that, under pressure, he can do the job.
"He just missed out on a hundred in Test series so he'll be a lot happier with that one under his belt."