Sri Lanka in possible upset
...with a little touch of Muttiah Muralitharan magic, Sri Lanka must be in with a chance here.
With Australia still smarting from their recent performance in India, Andy Morris is eyeing off Sri Lanka as an upset in the Twenty20 out West this Sunday.
Amidst all the hype of the Ashes, it's almost been forgotten that Sri Lanka are in Perth for a Twenty20 on Sunday.
And, no doubt, the Sri Lankans are hoping that the home-side have more than half an eye on what's to come.
The most reliable guide to form came in the Twenty20 World Cup in May when Australia beat the Sri Lankans by 81 runs in Barbados thanks largely to an unbeaten 85 from Cameron White.
Sri Lanka actually had Australia in some trouble at 4-30 in the fifth over, and would have retained some hope at overhauling Australia's 168, despite White and Mike Hussey's quick scoring - the pair put on 101 in the last 9.4 overs.
Suraj Randiv and Angelo Matthews bowled well in Barbados, Randiv the pick with his 3/20 from four overs including dismissing David Warner and David Hussey in consecutive balls. Matthews took early wickets and went for a modest six an over.
However, Sri Lanka were abysmal in reply, with Tillakaratne top scoring with just 20 as they went all out for 87 in just 16.2 overs. Apart from Shane Watson, who conceded 27 runs from his three wicket-less overs, all the Australian bowlers were effective as Mitchell Johnson headlined the show with 3/15 from 3.2 overs.
Sri Lanka did beat Australia by six wickets at Trent Bridge the previous June when Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara each scored a half century to see them home with an over to spare.
But it's the more recent defeat that will be uppermost on the minds of the Sri Lankans in Perth. They will hope that the Ashes is already distracting the home side to the point where they are vulnerable. And there's a powerful argument to be made for that - it's hard to see a T20 against Sri Lanka as a vital part of the preparation for the Ashes series, so in truth Australia probably won't care too much one way or the other.
That's not the official view coming out of the Sri Lankan camp.
"I think they take every single game they play seriously and always play their best in one-day series against us," Sangakkara said.
Australia returned from India with spirits surely a little lower than they were on the outbound plane, and surely, with a little touch of Muttiah Muralitharan magic, Sri Lanka must be in with a chance here.
There have been reports of plenty of money coming in for Australia for this one, but that should only give better value for those who believe Sri Lanka, simply by wanting the victory more, are a good bet.