Matthews, Malinga guide Sri Lanka to 1-wicket win

Melbourne: Angelo Mathews and Lasith Malinga combined in a record 132-run ninth-wicket partnership to guide Sri Lanka to an extraordinary one-wicket win on Wednesday that highlighted Australia`s falling status in international cricket.

Sri Lanka was reeling at 107 for eight in the 26th over chasing 240 to win when Mathews and Malinga combined. Together they ensured a tie before Malinga was run out for 56 with the total at 239-9.

No. 11 Muttiah Muralitharan calmly hit the winning runs in the next over, leaving Mathews unbeaten on 77 from 80 deliveries.

It was a sixth consecutive defeat for Australia in all formats of the game. Long ranked No. 1 in Test and one-day cricket, Australia has now lost three consecutive tests - one to Pakistan and two to India - before an ODI defeat in India and a lopsided loss to Sri Lanka in Perth on the weekend in a Twenty20 International.

Bureau Report