Cricket: Watson returns as Australia win toss, bat against Sri Lanka

Australia won the toss and chose to bat in the crunch World Cup Pool A game against Sri Lanka at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Sunday.

The 1996 winners Sri Lanka lead the Aussies by one point in the group standings and a win would clinch second spot in the pool behind leaders New Zealand.

Shane Watson returned to Australia's line-up, batting at No.6 for Mitchell Marsh after he was dropped for the last win over Afghanistan, while spinner Xavier Doherty will get his first start in the tournament for paceman Josh Hazlewood.

Doherty's inclusion is an indication that the SCG pitch is expected to favour spin.

Sri Lanka made three changes, with leg-spinner Seekkuge Prasanna, batsman Upul Tharanga and all-rounder Sachithra Senanayake coming in for the injured duo Dimuth Karunaratne and Rangana Herath, with Suranga Lakmal also left out.

It will be the first time all three will feature in the tournament.


Australia: David Warner, Aaron Finch, Steven Smith, Michael Clarke (capt), Glenn Maxwell, Shane Watson, James Faulkner, Brad Haddin (wkt), Mitchell Johnson, Mitchell Starc, Xavier Doherty

Sri Lanka: Lahiru Thirimanne, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara (wkt), Mahela Jayawardene, Angelo Mathews (capt), Dinesh Chandimal, Upul Tharanga, Thisara Perera, Seekkuge Prasanna, Sachithra Senanayake, Lasith Malinga.

Umpires: Ian Gould (ENG), Aleem Dar (PAK)

TV umpire: Richard Illingworth (ENG)

Match referee: Jeff Crowe (NZL)

Weather: Possible shower. Maximum temperature 29 degrees Celsius.