Aussies hapless, woeful against Sri Lanka: press

SYDNEY, November 6, 2010 (AFP) – Australian newspapers Saturday accused Ricky Ponting’s men of embarrassing, hapless and woeful play against Sri Lanka after the visitors scored their first-ever series success Down Under. Just weeks out from the start of the keenly-awaited Ashes series against England and without a win in any format since July, the Australians lost the second of three one day matches against Sri Lanka on Friday night.

“Just embarrassing,” read the headline in Sydney’s Daily Telegraph in an article which described the Australians as “woeful”.

“Everything that could go wrong did go wrong in a comprehensive 29-run defeat,” it said in its coverage of the shortened, rain-marred game at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

“Australia’s bowlers were dismantled by Sri Lanka with frightening ease and now injured pace bowler Doug Bollinger is in doubt for a key Ashes warm-up as his absence stretches into a fifth week.”

It said the team’s woes were summed up in one “cringe-worthy” episode — vice-captain Michael Clarke rocketing the ball towards the stumps to cause a run out but hitting teammate Shane Watson in the leg instead.

“No run out. No kidding. No excuse,” the tabloid said.

As The Austra