A masterful unbeaten 169 from Kusal Mendis led the way for Sri Lanka as they staged a comeback in the game and scored 282 for six in 80 overs, ending the third day’s play in the first Test in Pallekele with a lead of 196 runs.
Debutant left-arm wrist-spinner Lakshan Sandakan and Rangana Herath shared eight wickets equally to bowl Australia out for 203 runs in the first innings on the rain-affected second day of the first Test match in Pallekele, but at stumps, the visitors still commanded a handy lead of 80 runs.
Australia thoroughly decimated the Sri Lankan batting line-up and bowled them out for 117 runs before going on to score 66 for two after which a steady drizzle washed out the third session of the first day of the first Test in Pallekele.
Ahead of their respective series against West Indies and Sri Lanka, India and Australia face a prospect of losing points in the International Cricket Council Test team rankings, if they do not record comprehensive wins.
Steve O'Keefe completed a 10-wicket haul to follow up his unbeaten 78 in the first innings as Australia ran through Sri Lankan XI in their second innings, bowling them out for 83 runs in 20.5 overs to secure a victory by an innings and 162 runs in the tour match in Colombo.
Fifties from Steve O’Keefe and Steven Smith along with a cameo from Mitchell Starc took Australia to 431 for nine and extended their lead over Sri Lankan XI to 202 runs by the end of the second day’s play in the tour match in Colombo.
Riding on Steve O’Keefe's five-wicket haul, Australia bowled out Sri Lankan XI for 229 runs in 57.2 overs following which they scored 127 for one in 32 overs with Joe Burns hitting an unbeaten 64 on the first day of the tour match in Colombo.
Australian fast bowler Pat Cummins has been ruled out of Austraila A's upcoming home series against India A and South Africa A as the selectors have opted to give him more time to recover from his back injury.
After beating West Indies in the final of the recently concluded tri-series, Australia have managed to retain their position at the top of the ICC One-Day International Team Rankings despite losing a point.