Australia overcame a rain delay, high winds and dust from a sand storm to complete a five-wicket win over Sri Lanka in Lucknow to finally get their Cricket World Cup campaign up and running.
After winning the toss, Sri Lanka, who had also lost their opening two games, set a victory target of 210.
Following a solid start from openers Pathum Nissanka (61) and Kusal Perera (78), Sri Lanka slumped from 157 for two to 209 all out, their lowest score of the tournament so far.
Charith Asalanka had made a spirited 25 off 39 balls, but it was Australia’s bowlers who came out on top with Adam Zampa taking four for 47 while Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc both claimed two wickets.
The teams had already earlier been taken off for a half-hour rain delay before the match was halted again during the 43rd over when the winds increased.
Dust from a sand storm was blowing across the playing surface while advertising banners at the top of the stands came loose and went onto the outfield, while debris from temporary structures also fell down into the spectator seats.
Following a short delay of a few minutes, play resumed and Sri Lanka’s innings was soon brought to a close.
Some fans had been asked to move from the lower tier stands for Australia’s innings, which soon looked in trouble at 24 for two after Dilshan Madushanka trapped David Warner (11) lbw and then had Steve Smith out for a duck in the fourth over.
However, half-centuries from Mitchell Marsh (52) and Josh Inglis (58) helped steady the ship while Marnus Labuschagne weighed in with 40.
Glenn Maxwell’s swift unbeaten 31 and a rapid 20 not out from Marcus Stoinis then saw Australia push on to seal victory with almost 15 overs left at 215 for five.
Australia’s victory sees them move within striking distance of the top four ahead of their next match against Pakistan in Bangalore on Friday.