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Will Sri Lanka spring a surprise against high-octane Australia?
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Will Sri Lanka spring a surprise against high-octane Australia?

Sri Lanka flattened number one ranked T20 side Pakistan in their own backyard with a whitewash earlier this month but they couldn't sustain the onslaught from a clinical Australia side in the first T20I. The hosts relished a fabulous start to their summer with the resounding victory.

David Warner's first T20I century powered Australia to a massive triumph over the Islanders at Adelaide Oval enabling the hosts to struck the early blow in the three-match T20I series. Australia batting first put up a mammoth total of 232 and in reply, Sri Lanka couldn't come to grips with the herculean task, surrendering in the end at 99-9 in their 20 overs. 

Warner has rung the alarm bells for all top teams before the next year's T20 World Cup as the entire Australia team made the perfect start to their World Cup preparations - which is still almost a year away. Aaron Finch didn't look like he had a side strain a week ago as he smoked a half-century without showing any signs of fluster.  

Everything fell into place for the hosts as the bowlers joined the party after Warner and company were done with the carnage. Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins picked up two wickets each and dashed all hopes of Sri Lanka to put up some sort of a fight. Adam Zampa then consolidated Australia's strong position and spun a web around the visitors by shedding three wickets and gave away only 12 runs in his relentless spell. 

Sri Lanka have got a taste of the stern test in the shores of Australia where the conditions are nothing like subcontinent. Their bowling attack lacks the hostile pace and variety that Australia enjoys. The captain and Sri Lanka stalwart Lasith Malinga will have to galvanize his troops and lead from the front by taking early wickets ?— which is an area where the touring party fell short in the first encounter. 

More trouble awaits Sri Lanka batsmen as Gabba is renowned for being a happy hunting ground for pacers and Australia pace attack isn't expected to change tactics. Thus, a free-spirited counter-attack approach of tackling the bounce and pace may help Sri Lanka get on top of Aussies.

The young guns who stunned Pakistan in Lahore a few weeks ago could mull replaying the videos of the remarkable feat they pulled off recently. The likes of Oshada Fernando, Wanindu Hasaranga, Danushka Gunathilaka and Bhanuka Rajapaksa could keep this series alive by going with the same fearless clutter-free approach in the second T20I.

Australia squad

 Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell, Ben McDermott, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Billy Stanlake, Mitchell Starc, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, David Warner, Adam Zampa.

Sri Lanka squad

Lasith Malinga (c), Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Danushka Gunathilaka, Avishka Fernando, Niroshan Dickwella, Dasun Shanaka, Shehan Jayasuriya, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Oshada Fernando, Wanindu Hasaranga, Lakshan Sandakan, Nuwan Pradeep, Lahiru Kumara, Isuru Udana, Kasun Rajitha.