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Steven Smith, Shaun Marsh lead Australia fightback after Chandimal masterclass

Both Shaun Marsh and Steven Smith scored unbeaten half-centuries for Australia
Both Shaun Marsh and Steven Smith scored unbeaten half-centuries for Australia
©REUTERS / Action Images

Sri Lanka 355 (Chandimal 132) v
Australia 141-1 (Shaun 64no)
Third Test, day two, Colombo

An unbeaten 120-run stand between Steven Smith and Shaun Marsh guided Australia to 141 for one in 43 overs at stumps on the second day of the third Test in Colombo after a masterful century from Dinesh Chandimal helped Sri Lanka score 355 runs in the first innings.

Sri Lanka resumed batting on their overnight score of 214 for five. Dhananjaya de Silva (129) and Dinesh Chandimal (132) continued their diligent approach from the first day for majority of the session.

The 211-run stand was finally brought to an end when Nathan Lyon (3-110) had de Silva caught at short leg.

Chandimal and Dilruwan Perera (16) accelerated for a brief while before the latter holed out to long off in the 110th over.

Chandimal completed his century a little while later and was soon handed a reprieve by Smith (0-5) in the next over. Sri Lanka went into lunch with the score at 277 for seven.

Two overs into the second session, it began to rain and halted the play for about half an hour. Seven overs after the resumption, Rangana Herath (33 retired hurt) and Chandimal brought up the 50-run stand.

Smith dropped his second catch of the day, giving Herath a life. In the 137th over, Herath was struck in his groin and retired hurt.

Mitchell Starc (5-63) was brought back for another spell and he swiftly removed Chandimal and Suranga Lakmal (5) to complete a five-wicket haul which is his third in a row.Sri Lanka were bowled out for 355 runs in 141.1 overs.

David Warner (11) began the Australian innings with a six off the very first ball. However, in the fourth over, Warner was caught behind off de Silva (1-20).

Shaun (64 not out) and Smith (61 not out) saw off the remainder of the session safely and took Australia to 27 for one at the tea break.

In the final session, Shaun and Smith batted with caution against spinners and survived a few nervous moments at the start. Smith then completed 4000 runs in Test cricket, becoming the youngest Australian player to do so.

The Sri Lankan spinners kept asking questions but Smith and Shaun were solid at the crease and soon completed their individual fifties.

As the session drew to a close, Shaun survived an LBW review as the ball was pitching outside leg. At stumps on day two, Australia scored 141 for one and were trailing Sri Lanka by 214 runs.

© Cricket World 2016