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Australia, Sri Lanka make peace after heated on-field argument

AFP
Jan 29, 2013 at 10:03am IST

Melbourne: Australian and Sri Lankan players officially made peace following a fiery end to their final Twenty20 international won by the tourists off the last ball, Cricket Australia said. They also sought to play down the angry exchanges as the two sides walked off the pitch after Sri Lanka won by two runs under the Duckworth-Lewis method.

Cricket Australia admitted the rain-hit match finished with "ugly scenes" but stressed "both teams apologised".

Trouble erupted when allrounder Glenn Maxwell, needing four runs from the final ball to clinch victory for Australia, told the Sri Lankans, in no uncertain terms, to get on with it.

Australia, SL make peace after heated on-field argument

Australia and Sri Lanka are back on speaking terms after Glenn Maxwell visited the tourists' dressing room where both teams apologised.

Sri Lanka veteran Mahela Jayawardene, who earlier hit an unbeaten 61, yelled back at Maxwell. After the last ball was finally delivered the pair jostled in an angry face-to-face exchange.

Wicketkeeper Matthew Wade and captain George Bailey also bickered with Jayawardene and bowler Thisara Perera during the on-field handshakes. "I went into the Sri Lankan rooms after and they apologised for going over the top. All good," Maxwell said on Twitter.

He also admitted on Tuesday he too had been at fault. "Just to clarify... I apologised to Mahela and SL players as well. I have a good friendship with Mahela, and it's gonna stay that way!"

Australian captain George Bailey put the dispute down to "passion mate" and "heat of the moment". "People care about the game and care about the way they play," he said.

"I know we get along very well with this side. Even just the chats there coming off, I think it's all just heat-of-the-moment stuff. "But I think what you're seeing is individuals and teams that are pretty keen to win."

Jayawardene agreed. "To be honest it was just the heat of the moment. Things happen and you exchange a few words," he told reporters. "They play it hard and we play it hard. After the game you are friends."

The tourists won the first T20 match by five wickets at the Sydney Olympic Stadium on Saturday night. The one-day series was drawn 2-2 after Australia took the Test series 3-0.

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