Australia v Sri Lanka ODI: Phil Hughes century guides Aussies to victory

Last updated: 23rd January 2013  

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Australia beat Sri Lanka by 32 runs to salvage a 2-2 draw from their one-day series thanks to a huge slice of luck for Phil Hughes on his way to a match-winning century.

Hughes survived with his wicket intact despite a miss-timed pull shot resulting in the ball hitting the base of the stumps - and he took full advantage from his stroke of fortune to go on to strike an unbeaten 138.

Hughes' knock was by far the biggest input from the Australian batting line-up in Hobart as the team made 247-5 from their 50 overs, with only David Hussey's 34 not out anything like a contribution.

A couple of players got starts for Sri Lanka, but only Angelo Mathews went on to make a sizeable score (67) and his partnership with Ajantha Mendis of 72 did keep the visitors in with a shout of pinching a series-winning victory.

Once Mathews went, though, so did Sri Lanka's chance of victory, as they could only muster 215 all out inside the 49th over to see Australia square the five-match series 2-2.

Xavier Doherty had failed to take a wicket in the series but took three in one spell as he returned figures of 3-21 from eight overs, while Moises Henriques took 3-32 from his full ten overs.

It was a second century of the series for Hughes, but it would not have been possible had the bails not remained in position when his attempted hook shot saw the ball bounce straight down onto his foot and back towards the stumps.

Hughes was on just 20 at the time and Australia sat on 65-2 in their run chase, but to Sri Lanka's amazement he lived to fight on and he did just that by going on to make an unbeaten 138 from 154 balls.

Needing to score at nine for the final 15 overs, Sri Lanka tried to lift the tempo with a series of boundaries during their powerplay, but the task proved too great as the required run-rate continued to climb.

The lower order went down swinging and, despite a much improved performance in the one-day arena following a disappointing Test tour, the Sri Lankans will feel little consolation after letting the series win slip so early in the run chase.

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