Australia in front of Sri Lanka on third day
THE Sri Lankans pulled out a few rabbits from the hat on the third day of the first Test at Bellerive Oval yesterday, but Australia ended up well in front at stumps.
The hosts are 141 runs in front thanks, once again, to the tireless efforts of paceman Peter Siddle.
The Sri Lankans were bowled out for 336 in response to Australia's 5-450 (dec), with the hosts 0-27.
Openers Ed Cowan (16) and David Warner (eight) are the not-out batsmen.
The Victorian workhorse Siddle took 5-54 from 25.4 overs, and broke up the 161-run partnership of Angelo Mathews (75) and Tillakaratne Dilshan (147), after trapping Mathews lbw.
Siddle led the attack brilliantly before taking the sixth five-wicket haul of his career, after fellow quick Ben Hilfenhaus went down injured with a suspected side strain in just his fourth over of the day.
And the Sri Lankans pounced, particularly taking a likening to young tearaway Mitchell Starc who went for 104 from his 24 overs, for just the one wicket.
But that wicket was the prized scalp of Dilshan, bowled by a well-executed yorker.And from there, the visitors went on to lose 4-20.
Dilshan's first ton on Australian soil was a marathon 273-ball effort which kept the visitors in the game.
Aussie offspinner Nathan Lyon took 2-76 from 25 overs, while allrounder Shane Watson stepped up his workload in Hilfenhaus's absence.
Watson bowled 20.4 overs to take 1-55, with that prized scalp being captain Mahela Jayawardene.