Tom Curry will play no further part in England's tour of Australia after he was ruled out for the remaining two games through concussion.

The Sale Sharks flanker started for Eddie Jones' side in Saturday's first Test in Perth, but was replaced by Lewis Ludlam at the half-time break as the Wallabies snapped their losing streak in a dramatic 30-28 fightback win.

Curry had travelled to Brisbane for the tourists' next match, but will now fly back to England later this week in what is a sizeable blow.

The 24-year-old - a member of the British and Irish Lions party that toured South Africa last year - is considered a frontrunner for Jones' squad at the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France.

"It has been agreed that in the interest of player welfare and recovery, [Curry] will take no further part in the tour," the Rugby Football Union confirmed in a brief statement.

It is not yet known whether England will call up a replacement for Curry, who is the first noticeable injury the tourists have had to deal with.

The Sharks star - a Premiership Cup winner with the club in 2020, a year on from playing in England's World Cup final defeat to the Springboks in Japan - will continue further assessment upon his return to England.

Jhaniele Fowler scored 58 goals on Sunday to lead the West Coast Fever to the 2022 Suncorp Super Netball title following a keenly contested 70-59 victory over the Melbourne Vixens at the RAC Arena.

It was the Fever’s first league title in 25 years after losing in the finals in 2018 and 2020.

Fowler, who was recently appointed captain of Jamaica’s Sunshine Girls, missed one shot and got support from finals MVP Sasha Glasgow, who shot a perfect four for four from the field but who also hit four of her nine super shots. She also had 26 goal assists.

The Fever never trailed at the intervals having led 18-14 at the end of the first quarter and took a six-point lead (35-29) into half-time.

By the end of the third quarter, the Fever extended the lead to nine points after winning the interval 19-16 before closing out the championship outscoring their opponents 16-14 in the final stanza.

Mwai Kemwenda was outstanding for the Vixens scoring 28 of her 29 attempts while Keira Austin missed only two of her 19 shots during the contest.

The victory, which gave Fowler her first hold on the Super League title, capped another outstanding season for the four-time Fever MVP. Heading into the final, Fowler led the league in scoring – 804 goals, goal attempts (833), offensive rebounds (46) and Nissan Net Points (1438).

Eddie Jones suggested Darcy Swain's first-half dismissal worked in Australia's favour as England crashed to a dismal fourth defeat in a row.

England initially took advantage of their opponents being down to 14 men thanks to Ellis Genge's try early in the second half, only to then collapse in remarkable style.

Jordan Petaia, Folau Fainga'a and Pete Samu crossed over to put Australia out of sight, with Henry Arundell and Jack van Poortvliet tries mere consolations for England.

The visitors were five points ahead with 20 minutes left but went on to lose 30-28, and Jones says their terrible final-quarter showing was not helped by Swain's earlier sending off.

"In some ways, the red card can work against you. Sometimes the referee wants to compensate. We didn't adjust as well as we should have," Jones told Sky Sports.

"We had enough moments to win the game. At 14-9 with 20 minutes to go we should have put it away. The reaction from the boys is to win this series 2-1. We have to go again.

"The message at half-time was to keep putting pressure on and we did that in spurts. We lost the ball twice on their try-line and we didn't pressure them, whereas Australia did. 

"We need to work on our finishing and a bit on our defence as well. There are still some positives to come from what has been a very disappointing result for us."

Jones clarified at his news conference that he did not blame referee James Doleman for his side's defeat in Perth, but reiterated Swain's exit inadvertently helped Australia.

"You look at the history of the game, whenever you get a red card the referee evens it up. He helps the team with the red card," he said.

"It's social reciprocity, it happens, that's normal and we've got to be good enough to handle it.

"It happens in every game of rugby I've seen. The team gets a red card and the opposition gets evened up. Because they're nice blokes, referees.

"I'm not criticising the referees, I'm not using it as an excuse, that's the reality of rugby.

"I'll say it again. I think when you play against 14 men the referee has a significant impact on the game and you've got to be good enough to understand what that is.

"We weren't good enough to understand what that is and therefore we paid the price."

England's defeat was their first against Australia in nine Tests amid a run stretching back to October 2015, pre-dating Jones' time in charge.

Not only did the home side play more than half of the match a man light, they also lost three players to first-half injuries after Quade Cooper pulled up in the warm-up.

Swain was repeatedly provoked by England's players, with Jonny Hill seen pulling his hair, but Australia coach Dave Rennie is unsure if that was a deliberate ploy from the opposition.

"I'm not sure if it was a team plan, but there was certainly provocation there. Not just in that situation but also earlier in the game," he said.

"We'll have a decent look at the footage and work out how we're going to appeal that. We'll have decent look at the card. We'll be seeking clarity around it.

"We train with the scenario of playing with 14 or 13 players all the time. What we know is that we just have to work harder. We found a way."

Australia have now won their last five Tests on home soil – their best-such run since 2008 – and five of their last eight when hosting European opposition.

The second match in the three-Test series takes place in Brisbane next Saturday, before concluding in Sydney the following weekend.

Australia snapped an eight-match losing run against England in thrilling fashion with a 30-28 victory at Optus Stadium in Perth, despite playing more than half of Saturday's contest with 14 men.

The hosts lost fly-half Quade Cooper to injury just before kick-off and were given an even bigger headache when Darcy Swain was dismissed six minutes before half-time for headbutting Jonny Hill.

Eddie Jones' men were leading 6-0 at that point thanks to a couple of Owen Farrell penalties and looked good value to extend their winning streak in this fixture, only for Noah Lolesio to level from the boot before the interval, by which point Australia had lost three more to injury.

England finally managed to shake off their opponents when some great execution and patience from a maul allowed Ellis Genge to cross over for the first try of the three-Test series, but Australia again refused to give up and edged in front through a Jordan Petaia try 15 minutes later.

That led to a remarkable England collapse, with Folau Fainga'a claiming the ball from a line-out and sneaking through just two minutes after being introduced, before Pete Samu added a third try following another fine team drive.

Lolesio converted all three of those tries but was sin-binned for a deliberate knock on, meaning Australia were down to 13 men late on, at which point debutant Henry Arundell raced through with his first involvement after being brought on.

Another England debutant in Jack van Poortvliet finished shortly after, with Farrell again adding the extras, but England did not have a chance to resume play in a defeat that will lead to more questions being asked of Jones.

Ex-Australia back Israel Folau saw his return to Test rugby cut short after he limped off in the first half of Tonga's Pacific Nations Cup loss to Fiji.

The former Wallabies star injured his leg in a collision less than half-an-hour into his debut and left the field in the 27th minute as 'Ikale Tahi slumped to a 36-0 defeat in Suva.

A 73-Test veteran with Australia, Folau - who qualifies for Tonga through his parents - was eligible to switch under new World Rugby regulations that allow for a change of nation after three years of international inactivity.

The 33-year-old, who originally moved to union following a four-year league career in the NRL with Melbourne Storm and Brisbane Broncos, is currently with Shining Arcs Tokyo-Bay Urayasu in Japan's Top League.

Folau is effectively in exile from professional sport in his home country after he was sacked by Rugby Australia over a homophobic social media post in 2019.

He subsequently returned to rugby league and spent a season with Catalans Dragons in Super League before skipping out to return to union in Japan, after he was blacklisted from playing in either code in Australia.

Tonga selected him as part of their squad for the Pacific Nations Cup in May, but it remains to be seen if Folau - who also played AFL with Greater Western Sydney for two years - will be fit enough to return for their next game against Australia A.

Pat Cummins was delighted with Australia's "brave" approach after they thrashed Sri Lanka by 10 wickets on day three of the first Test.

The tourists took a first-innings lead of 109 at the Galle International Stadium on Friday before bowling Sri Lanka out for only 113.

Nathan Lyon took 4-31 after claiming a five-wicket haul in the first innings, and part-time spinner Travis Head, who had never taken a Test wicket, claimed stunning figures of 4-10 as Sri Lanka folded.

Mitchell Swepson took the other two wickets, and after being set only five runs to take a 1-0 lead in the two-match series, David Warner hit Ramesh Mendis for four and then six inside the first over to seal an emphatic victory.

Australia captain Cummins said: "A couple of new words we're using about our approach is about being proactive and being brave.

"We saw some really clear methods from all the batters. They might have been individually a bit different, but you saw everyone being really proactive and putting pressure back on the bowlers. It's something you'd normally talk about in one-day cricket or T20 cricket. But I think that's the style over here that's needed."

He added: "I think it's part of the environment that we are trying to create. Failure is absolutely okay, as long as you are failing in a way you are happy to be."

The paceman lavished praise on spinner Lyon, who moved into the top 10 on the list of all-time leading Test wicket-takers by taking his tally to 436.

"I wouldn't change Lyon for anyone," Cummins said. "He's gone into the top 10 wicket-takers of all time. You saw him out there. He's unplayable for left or right-handers.

"Sometimes out here, bounce for spinners is spoken about [as] something that's not desirable, but he showed here with that bounce he was unplayable. His stamina as well – you give him the ball from one end and say see you at the end of the day."

Michael Hooper says Australia are ready to "rip in" and "turn the ledger" on England when they do battle in the first Test on Saturday.

England have won eight consecutive matches against the Wallabies ahead of the showdown at Optus Stadium.

Australia captain Hooper is determined to end that dismal run in Perth this weekend and take a 1-0 lead over Eddie Jones' side in the three-match series

"It's a motivation to win and turn the ledger," he said.

"We have three games at home to do it. It’s been a long time since we’ve played these fellas out here, so we're excited about it.

"It's the top rivalry, isn’t it? Having the Ashes at the back end of last year and this year, the whole of Australian population gets behind whether they're here or in England, it's bragging rights, so it's big for the fans and us.

"There’s some great history between the two teams and two teams rolling into a World Cup next year.

"We're really excited, history hasn’t been in our favour for quite some time now against the English and we're keen to rip in.

"They’re always a tough outfit. They’ve picked a powerful team with some real skill and experience involved there. We’re expecting a tough time."

Hooker David Porecki and lock Cadeyrn Neville will make their Wallabies debuts on Saturday.

At the age of 33 years and 235 days, Neville is to become the third-oldest Australia debutant since World War II.

 

Michael Hooper says Australia are ready to "rip in" and "turn the ledger" on England when they do battle in the first Test on Saturday.

England have won eight consecutive matches against the Wallabies ahead of the showdown at Optus Stadium.

Australia captain Hooper is determined to end that dismal run in Perth this weekend and take a 1-0 lead over Eddie Jones' side in the three-match series

"It's a motivation to win and turn the ledger," he said.

"We have three games at home to do it. It’s been a long time since we’ve played these fellas out here, so we're excited about it.

"It's the top rivalry, isn’t it? Having the Ashes at the back end of last year and this year, the whole of Australian population gets behind whether they're here or in England, it's bragging rights, so it's big for the fans and us.

"There’s some great history between the two teams and two teams rolling into a World Cup next year.

"We're really excited, history hasn’t been in our favour for quite some time now against the English and we're keen to rip in.

"They’re always a tough outfit. They’ve picked a powerful team with some real skill and experience involved there. We’re expecting a tough time."

Hooker David Porecki and lock Cadeyrn Neville will make their Wallabies debuts on Saturday.

At the age of 33 years and 235 days, Neville is to become the third-oldest Australia debutant since World War II.

 

Henry Arundell could be a "significant player" by the time of the 2023 Rugby World Cup, says England coach Eddie Jones, who compared him to the legendary Bryan Habana after his exploits in training.

The London Irish back is in line for his international debut after he was named on the bench for the tourists' first match of their three-game series against hosts Australia in Perth.

While Jones has rung the changes elsewhere across his squad – with Owen Farrell stripped of the captaincy and Courtney Lawes installed with the armband – he has nevertheless been impressed by the 19-year-old's skill.

Speaking ahead of Saturday's opener at Perth Stadium, the coach illustrated the teenager's exploits amid his squad's preparation – and suggested he could emulate South Africa winger Habana with a bright, fast future.

"Henry scored...how long is the field, 100 metres? He scored a 90-metre try at training on Wednesday. There were a few, I won't use the expletives, 'he's fast!' heard," Jones said.

"We had a number of coaches from different sports watching and they heard this comment.

"He scored a try not many other players in the world would have scored. It was like a try Bryan Habana used to score – one of those.

"He could be a very good player but he's got a long way to go. We feel like if he continues his development and we're able to give him some game time on this tour, by the World Cup he could be a significant player."

England will follow their game in Perth with successive clashes in Brisbane on July 9 and Sydney on July 16, with the visitors looking to extend their eight-match winning streak against Australia.

Jones is looking to reverse a slump in his side's form, ahead of next year's World Cup, where they are currently drawn alongside Japan, Argentina and Samoa in Pool D.

Eddie Jones has the respect of England's players but must deliver results if he is to lift pressure from his shoulders ahead of next year's Rugby World Cup, according to former Australia captain George Gregan.

Experienced coach Jones had his future called into question on the back of another poor Six Nations campaign for England, who finished a distant third behind Ireland and champions France with two wins from five matches.

Jones is under contract until after the 2023 World Cup and has been given the support of the Rugby Football Union (RFU), although performance director Conor O'Shea confirmed in March the search is under way for the 62-year-old's long-term successor.

Former Australia boss Jones has repeatedly stated that peaking in time for next year's showpiece in France is his big aim, with his side's three-Test series Down Under – their first summer tour in four years – providing an opportunity to further experiment.

While Gregan can understand the questions being asked of Jones, the retired scrum-half – who played under Jones for Australia and the Brumbies – understands supporters want to see signs of progress now.

"I think pressure is always there with a head coach," said Gregan, ahead of Saturday's first Test in Perth. "I'm not going to speak on his behalf, but he knows that as a head coach it's all results driven in professional sport.

"If you're not getting the results, and particularly if you're not getting consistent Ws [wins], then it does come around: 'Why is the team not performing?' That was definitely the case with Six Nations where there's patches of really good performances.

"But then obviously some things also which can get taken out of your hands, which is decision-making, you lose plays in the bin, all that kind of stuff. But that's rugby. And so how do you adapt? And how do you adjust? But they're all good experiences and learning experiences.

"I know there was no Jonny May, there was no Owen Farrell, there's a lot of players missing in that Six Nations campaign, they'll probably take part in this coming tour. And then he's built a nice squad."

Gregan is supporting The Open Championship Claret Jug Tour, partnered with HSBC UK, and he added: "I think you've always got your eyes a little bit ahead for the World Cup. And that's definitely the case for someone like Eddie and all coaches, but it's also the here and now, and they'll be looking to really improve and try not to drop out of games. I think every good team wants to do that."

 

England may have struggled for consistent form, but they have won their last eight Tests against Australia since October 2015, conceding an average of just 14 points per game across the last four of those matches.

Jones is undefeated against his country of birth during his near-seven-year England tenure, meanwhile, and famously oversaw a series whitewash in 2016.

Gregan believes the England boss will have the full backing of his dressing room.

"Eddie is a real players' coach. He's really driven to create the best environment for his players to perform," Gregan said. "He's the hardest marker on the team's performance on himself. I think you see that a lot.

"He'll deflect to the team when it's doing well, and he’ll take ownership when it's not doing well. That's a classic head coach, and he's never wavered from that. And I think that's why the players really respect him.

"He's hard, he's very consistent in terms of his messaging. He's very clear on what he wants the team to do. But he also empowers the playing group to try and do that. And that's the coach's coach.

"And ultimately, I think from my experiences with Eddie, he really wants the players to be sort of taking the reins on the field and making sure they're really comfortable making decisions to provide support.

"But as you know, coaches are sort of in the grandstand, there's only a limited amount that they can do once the players are on the pitch. I think that's what he tries to do, and all good head coaches try to encourage those leaders and the players on the field to make good decisions, which hopefully put you on the right side of the ledger."

Australia have lost three straight Tests heading into their first fixture with England this weekend, two of those by a margin of no more than two points – the last time they lost more successive games was a four-game stretch from June to August in 2018.

However, the Wallabies have won their last four matches on home turf, and four of their past seven when hosting European opposition, which Gregan believes will make for an entertaining series.

"England playing Australia in any sport is always exciting – particularly rugby," Gregan said. "Obviously there's that little touch with Eddie being a former Wallabies coach and obviously Australian. And he's had a great record against the Wallabies since he's taken over the helm in English rugby.

"It's gonna be a fantastic series, Dave Rennie, the Wallaby coaching staff and the playing group will be really targeting the series as something, which is another step in the right direction for being consistent and beating some of the top international teams.

"Perth, Brisbane and Sydney, on the bounce. So, three big Test matches over three consecutive weeks. And I think both teams, stating the obvious, will want to get off to a pretty hot start in Perth, because it's always good to be one up in those types of series."


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Usman Khawaja and Cameron Green scored half-centuries as Australia moved into a strong position on a rain-affected day of the first Test against Sri Lanka.

Only 44 overs were bowled at the Galle International Stadium on Thursday after no play was possible in the morning session due to rain and high winds, which brought down the roof of a temporary stand.

The tourists made up for lost time after play got under way at 1.45pm local time, reaching 313-8 in reply to Sri Lanka's 212 all out when the umpires called stumps due to bad light.

The in-form Khawaja made a patient 71 and all-rounder Green struck an excellent 77, while Alex Carey scored a brisk 45 before Pat Cummins smashed an unbeaten 26 off only 16 balls.

Dhananjaya de Silva had Travis Head caught and bowled in the second over of the day and Australia were 157-5 when Khawaja became Jeffrey Vandersay's first Test victim.

Green and Carey then combined for an 84-run stand to put the tourists on top, scoring quickly as they swept with conviction in tricky conditions.

Dinesh Chandimal took an excellent catch running back from mid-off and Green finally fell leg before to Ramesh Mendis, the pick of the bowlers with 4-107, in the final session.

Captain Cummins provided a late flurry of runs to extend his side's lead to 101 at stumps, hitting two sixes in what proved to be the last over the day from Vandersay as Australia put themselves in a great position to take a 1-0 lead in the two-match series.

 

Khawaja purple patch continues

This was another assured knock from Khawaja, who made his 17th Test half-century at the top of the order in what has been a magnificent year for the left-hander.

After scoring two centuries, 91 and 44 not out in the series win over Pakistan, the 35-year-old took his tally of Test runs in 2022 to 822 at a staggering average of 117.42.

Green shows maturity

The 23-year-old Green was not required to bowl as Sri Lanka were dismissed on day one, but he made his mark with the bat.

He became the second-youngest player to score a Test half-century for Australia in Sri Lanka behind the late Phil Hughes (22y 290d in September 2011). Green scored found the rope six times in a composed knock.

Owen Farrell is "very unhappy" to have been replaced as England captain by Courtney Lawes for Saturday's series opener against Australia, head coach Eddie Jones confirmed.

Lawes stepped into the role late last year and, like Tom Curry, went on to captain England during the Six Nations, with Farrell absent due to ankle problems.

Farrell is back in the fold after making a full recovery from those injuries, but it would seem any preconceptions about walking straight back into the captaincy role were misplaced.

The armband has been with Farrell since 2018, meaning Saturday's match will be his first for England without being captain since the 2018 Six Nations.

But given the injury troubles he has had, Jones wants Farrell to focus on his form without the distraction of the key leadership role.

When asked about Farrell's reaction to his decision, Jones said: "Very unhappy.

"Owen is a bloke who expresses his feelings clearly and he wants to be captain. When I told him he wasn't going to be captain, he wasn't very happy. But that's okay.

"Owen's had a fair while out of the team and at this stage we feel it's the best thing for the team and for Owen, because he's a very important player for us.

"He has played 94 Tests for England and he has won every trophy in the world, apart from the World Cup. He's a pretty fair player and he's a very important player for us.

"We want Owen to be at his best and he's been out of the side for a while, so it's an opportunity for him to play three Tests back-to-back and produce his best."

Elsewhere in the team, Danny Care will make his first Test appearance in almost four years, while Henry Arundell, Jack van Poortvliet and Guy Porter are among the replacements and hoping to make their first appearances.

Billy Vunipola is back for his first England outing since the 2021 Six Nations, though Jonny May is absent after testing positive for coronavirus last week.

In total, there will be six changes to England's last Test, a Six Nations loss to France just over three months ago, and Jones is confident his chosen XV has what it takes to challenge the Wallabies.

"We have had very strong preparation for this game," he added.

"We did some good recovery work in Fremantle and quality training in Perth. The squad has come together well since we met up last week.

"Picking the 23 out of this group of 36 was difficult. We feel we have a well-balanced team, which is ready for this improving Australia team. We'll take it to them from the start."

 

England team:  Freddie Steward, Jack Nowell, Joe Marchant, Owen Farrell, Joe Cokanasiga, Marcus Smith, Danny Care; Ellis Genge, Jamie George, Will Stuart, Maro Itoje, Jonny Hill, Courtney Lawes, Tom Curry, Billy Vunipola.

Replacements: Luke Cowan-Dickie, Mako Vunipola, Joe Heyes, Ollie Chessum, Lewis Ludlam, Jack van Poortlviet, Guy Porter, Henry Arundell.

Pat Cummins is excited to have the "luxury" of being able to call upon Mitchell Swepson in the first Test against Sri Lanka.

Australia captain Cummins has confirmed leg-spinner Swepson will play when the two-match series gets under way at the Galle International Stadium on Wednesday.

Swepson made his debut in the longest format during the series victory in Pakistan in March, taking two wickets in as many matches.

With Ashton Agar ruled out due to side strain and Jon Holland nursing a finger injury, the 28-year-old will get another opportunity in a Test that will be dedicated to the late, great Shane Warne four months after he tragically passed away.

Skipper Cummins said: "We're really happy with Swepo. He is bowling beautifully and really ready for this one.

"These conditions … it's quite different to what we experience in Australia. That's the challenge of trying to win overseas.

"A lot of our preparation work has been around trusting our own methods. We might go about it a little bit differently to how Sri Lanka will."

The paceman added: "I think his role here might be slightly different as well. Pakistan we knew was going to be a slow grind and I thought he did his job despite not taking the wickets he would like. He was a really important cog in that bowling engine.

"It's always exciting having a leggie in the side as a captain. It feels like a real luxury to throw him the ball and see him go about it."

Glenn Maxwell could provide another spin option along with first-choice tweaker Nathan Lyon if Travis Head misses out with a hamstring injury.

If World Test Championship leaders Australia take a 1-0 lead in their quest to win the Warne-Muralidaran Trophy, it will be their 400th Test victory. However, Sri Lanka have won each of their past three Tests against Australia on home soil.

Sri Lanka beat Bangladesh 1-0 away from home in their last Test series under new head coach Chris Silverwood.


Sri Lanka looking to put Australia in a spin

Captain Dimuth Karunaratne suggested Sri Lanka will select three spinners, with the uncapped Jeffrey Vandersay called up after impressing in a 3-2 ODI series win over Australia.

Lasith Embuldeniya, Praveen Jayawickrama and Ramesh Mendis are the other tweakers in the squad.

Sri Lanka have won eight of their past 12 Tests at Galle International Stadium, including the previous two.

Landmark Test for in-form Khawaja 

Usman Khawaja has had a new lease of life since he was recalled during the 4-0 Ashes hammering of England.

The left-handed batter is set to play in his 50th Test in Galle on the back of an outstanding series in Pakistan - scoring two centuries and making 97 in the first Test.

Khawaja has an average of just 28.4 against Sri Lanka – his second lowest against any team he's played more than one Test against. 

Glen Ella says Eddie Jones will be thriving on coming under fire and expects England to step up when they face Australia in a three-match Test series next month.

The 62-year-old heads back to his homeland with the Red Rose smarting from a chastening warm-up hammering at the hands of the Barbarians following a disappointing Six Nations campaign.

Jones is undefeated against his country of birth during his England tenure, and famously oversaw a series whitewash in 2016.

Ella, a former school-mate of Jones who also played club rugby with him at Randwick and was his assistant six years ago, feels he will conjure up a response with his back against the wall and with key men to return.

"I sit here laughing when I see some of the press that is coming out of England," he told The Guardian. "Some of it is warranted, there’s no doubt about that, but this is what he thrives on.

"They’ll come over here and put three good games together, that wouldn’t surprise me one bit.

"He thrives under that kind of pressure and that probably brings the best out of him, especially away from England, in an environment that he knows.

"He probably left not on the best terms in Australia but the one thing about Eddie is that he’s got a lot of belief in himself and a lot of belief in his team."

The Wallabies will have a point to prove after failing to get the better of England under Jones and they are a different proposition under Dave Rennie.

"It’s harder coaching a foreign team, as Eddie is finding at the moment, and to win the Australian public over they need to win the series," Ella added.

"But it’s a different Australia these days and especially with the Super Rugby sides on the up, there’s big expectation. England have beaten the Australians eight times under Eddie and so [Australia’s] got a lot to answer for."

 

Alex Carey delivered an important unbeaten 45 as Australia defeated Sri Lanka by four wickets on a difficult pitch in Colombo.

Sri Lanka had sealed their first home multi-game bilateral ODI series victory over Australia in three decades with a game to spare, but made a poor start in the final match on Friday.

Chamika Karunaratne, who came in at number eight, top-scored with a run-a-ball 75 but Kusal Mendis (26), Charith Asalanka (14) and Pramod Madushan (15) were the only other batters to register double figures.

That saw Sri Lanka bowled all for just 160, with Josh Hazlewood (2-22), Matthew Kuhnemann (2-26) and Pat Cummins (2-22) the pick of the bowlers.

Having seen Sri Lanka struggle in bowler-friendly conditions, Australia began their chase in similarly slow fashion, falling to 19-3 after losing David Warner (10), Aaron Finch (0) and debutant Josh Inglis (5).

Mitchell Marsh (24) and Marnus Labuschagne (31) steadied the ship, though, before Carey produced his patient.

Carey was ably supported by Glenn Maxwell's flurry of 16 from 17 deliveries, while Cameron Green stepped up with an impressive, unbeaten 25 that included one six and two fours as Australia avoided a series whitewash.

Hazlewood recovers

Hazlewood has struggled when facing Sri Lanka in ODIs, registering a bowling average of 96 – his poorest in the format against any side – before this game.

However, the paceman found his form, and is now just three wickets away from picking up 100 dismissals in 50-over international cricket.

Sri Lanka come unstuck

Sri Lanka have thrived against Australia by producing pitches to favour their spinners, though that plan was the reason they came unstuck this time out.

Having faltered here, Sri Lanka missed the chance to record four consecutive ODI wins over Australia at home for the first time since a run of four between September 1994 and September 1996.

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