Australia complete the Ageas Bowl hat-trick with victory against Sri Lanka ahead of World Cup
Australia completed a hat-trick of World Cup warm-up game wins at the Ageas Bowl with a comfortable five-wicket success against Sri Lanka on bank holiday Monday.
West Indies, England and Sri Lanka have all fallen to the defending world champions at the south coast venue in the last week.
It shows Australia are determined not to relinquish their cricket crown when the competition starts for real on Thursday.
Sri Lanka made a solid start after winning the toss and opting to bat.
Openers Lahiru Thirimanne and Dimuth Karunarathne guided their side to 44 runs without loss.
The Australian breakthrough came when Karunarathne was given out caught behind following a successful DRS appeal.
Thirimanne went on to complete a classy half century by going down the wicket to Nathan Lyons and lofting him to the long on boundary.
Sri Lanka then lost their way, particularly after Lyons exacted his revenge by bowling Thirimanne.
They slumped to 163 for six before Thisara Perera (27 off 32 balls) and Dhananjaya de Silva (43 off 41 balls) gave the innings some much needed late impetus.
Their valuable runs helped Sri Lanka reach 239 for eight off their 50 overs.
Sri Lanka struck the early blow they needed at the start of the Australian innings when Nuwan Pradeep had Aaron Finch out lbw following a review.
Usman Khawaja (89) and Shaun Marsh (34 off 46 balls) kept the Aussies on track by keeping the scoreboard ticking along nicely.
Khawaja survived one lbw review scare to go on and notch a confident 50 off 55 balls.
Despite Marsh holing out to long on Australia remained on course.
Glenn Maxwell (36 off 36 balls) and Marcus Stoinis (32 off 30 balls) maintained the momentum.
Though Khawaja was out stumped in the 41st over Australia coasted to victory.