After being literally massacred by Sri Lanka in the three-match test series, only a select few individuals would have backed Australia to do well in the ODI series. There seemed to be no way for the Kangaroos to adapt to the slow and low Sri Lankan pitches that were fully exploited by the hosts. And after skipper Steve Smith departed from the ODI series midway, things looked completely out of hand for Australia.
But then began an inspiring turnaround as the fresh and crisp leadership of David Warner took over. Under Warner’s astute captaincy, the Australians won the last three games of the series. In a chat before the second T20I in Colombo, coach Darren Lehmann lauded his ODI unit for scripting a memorable turnaround in difficult conditions.
“Credit to the one-day players coming in and playing a different way in the way they played spin,” Lehmann said in his interaction with cricket.com.au. “And they adapted probably quicker than our Test blokes, that’s just an honest appraisal. “Everyone knows that it’s pretty many results driven. “We’ve played very well in the one-day format on very similar wickets; they’re slow and have spun, so it’s been a good performance by the one-day boys.”
Lehmann in particular heaped praises on youngster Travis Head for his good show. “Trav getting experience has been really important for us, he’s a young player who’s up and coming and he’s learning very quickly,” Lehmann said. “The only way you learn is by playing in these conditions, and hopefully playing some games at home as well. “So I’m really impressed with the young man and the way he’s gone about it, I thought he was very good with Glenn Maxwell the other night to finish off the innings. “So the more chances we can give those guys in these one-day series, the better off we’re going to be long-term.”
The Australian coach also added upon the criteria of selecting the best XI. “We have been very clear that you’ve still got to make runs in each and every game you play, and make runs at the start of the summer,” he said. “So it will come down to performance, as it normally does, but also conditions and the way you play in Australia. “You select the best 11 to play in any conditions, whether it’s Perth or Chennai or Mumbai or Lord’s. “That will change the 11 but an even squad is what you’re after and then you can chop and change when you’re away and depending on the conditions that are in front of you.”