Hussey would not necessarily have anticipated getting one final innings when Sri Lanka were bowled out for 278, Dinesh Chandimal stretching his side's meagre lead to 140 with an impressive unbeaten 62. But, led by Rangana Herath (three for 46), the tourists bowled well enough to make life uncomfortable for Australia and give Hussey the chance for one last slice of glory.
Hussey finished unbeaten on 27 as Australia scored 141 for five, but - ever the team man - he allowed Mitchell Johnson to hit the winning run, much to the crowd's disappointment.
Put in just before lunch, Australia's nerves were jangling when David Warner was out for a golden duck, as the left-hander edged Suranga Lakmal to Mahela Jayawardene at second slip, but Ed Cowan (36) joined in partnerships of 45 with Phillip Hughes (34) and 59 with Michael Clarke (29) to ensure the result was never really in doubt, despite late wickets.
Hughes was out to Herath via a DRS review - the Sri Lankans appeared to be appealing for a catch, but replays confirmed the lbw - and Clarke fell to a bat-pad catch off Tillakaratne Dilshan.
With wickets falling, the departing Hussey entered the fray. It may not have been the end captain Clarke was looking for, but there was no doubt it was what the crowd wanted as they welcomed Hussey with a standing ovation. Hussey produced two boundaries for the crowd to cheer and stayed calm as the impressive Herath removed Cowan and Matthew Wade.
Somewhat farcically, tea was taken with Australia needing five to win but the home side knocked them off without issue after the resumption.
Any hopes Sri Lanka had of winning rested on the shoulders of wicketkeeper Chandimal as they resumed on 225 for seven, a lead of 87. He added 40 to his overnight 22 and marshalled a last-wicket stand of 41 with Nuwan Pradeep.
It took five and a half overs for the first wicket to fall as Herath played on to Jackson Bird while attempting to shoulder arms. When Lakmal was bowled by Mitchell Johnson the end appeared to be near, but Chandimal took 14 off one Bird over and, with Pradeep digging in, passed 50 with a well-placed clip through the leg side off Bird.
A wonderful off drive off Peter Siddle showed Chandimal's class and Pradeep even hit a couple of boundaries of his own, but the number 11 fell to the eighth delivery with the new ball, edging Bird through to wicketkeeper Wade.
- Sports & Recreation
- Rangana Herath
- Dinesh Chandimal