Kulasekara stars in low-scoring thriller

Sri Lanka took a 2-1 lead in the five-match series despite scares chasing a small target of 75.

Brisbane: Sri Lanka defeated Australia by four wickets after bowling out the home side for an embarrassing 74 in the third one-day international at the Gabba on Friday to take a 2-1 series lead.

An inswinging onslaught from Sri Lanka's bowlers led to the demolition of the home side in 26.4 overs, their lowest ODI score for 27 years.

At one stage Australia were 40-9 before putting on 34 for the last wicket. Nuwan Kulasekara took five for 22 and Lasith Malinga picked up 3-14.

In their reply Sri Lanka also struggled against hostile bowling but reached their target with an astonishing 30 overs remaining.

Australia's Mitchell Johnson found plenty of movement, taking 3-11 in three overs.

The next match is at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Sunday and the final game is in Hobart on Wednesday.

Match scores: Australia 74 all out (26.4 overs); Sri Lanka 75 for six (20 overs).