Australia vs Sri Lanka SCG Test: cricket live scores, updates (Day 4)

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    Australia v Sri Lanka


    3rd Test - AUS v SLA

    Sri Lanka 1st Inn 294 All Out
    Australia 1st Inn 9/432
    Sri Lanka 2nd Inn 278 All Out
    Australia 2nd Inn 5/141
    Australia won the toss and elected to bowl
    Australia won by 5 wickets
    Australia Over:42.5  RR:3.29
    Batsmen Runs B 4s 6s SR
    MEK Hussey 27 42 2 0 64.29
    MG Johnson* 1 7 0 0 14.29
    Sri Lanka
    Bowlers O M R W Econ
    HMRKB Herath* 16.5 0 47 3 2.79
    TM Dilshan 18.0 2 57 1 3.17
    Recent Overs:
    1  4  .  1  .  .  | .  .  .  .  .  1  | 2  .  .  1  .  .  |
    Last Wicket: Wade, 9 (BWD:Herath)
    Current Partnership: 9 runs, 24 balls, RR:37.50

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    Australia are on the brink of a 3-0 whitewash of Sri Lanka thanks to a lacklustre batting effort from the visitors for the fourth time in a row.

    We’ll bring you the live scores of the action throughout this game, with the third day starting at 10.30 am AEDT on January 6.

    It was a usual story of if-only-they-had-batted-better for Sri Lanka. The start was decent, the odds of putting pressure back on Australia were good and then an inexplicable middle-order capitulation spoiled it all for the visitors.

    They now stare at a certain defeat unless Australia get afflicted by a problem they often suffered from in the late 1990s and early 2000s – failure to chase smallish targets in dead rubbers.

    Having conceded a 138-run lead to Australia, Sri Lanka got exactly what they needed from their top-order.

    A confident 85 from Dimuth Karunaratne coupled with a spunky half-century from Mahela Jayawardene, Sri Lanka were only six adrift of the Aussie lead with nine wickets intact.

    Then the inexperienced opener fell, only a few runs short of his first century in Australia and the rest of the order crumbled without fight.

    First innings star Lahiru Thirimanne got out cheaply, as did Thilan Samaraweera and Angelo Mathews, with only Dinesh Chandimal holding fort going into the fourth day.

    Only 87 ahead and with three wickets in the kitty, Sri Lanka will need divine intervention if they have to escape from this series without a clean sweep against them.

    Not that Sri Lanka did not have their chances with the ball. With Australia seemingly pushed to the corner by stumps on the second day, the visitors needed to get their act together with the ball in the first session.

    Instead, a superlative, backs-to-the-wall effort from Matthew Wade – who carved out a century and helped an Australian declaration – ensured that the hosts will have enough in their banks by the time Sri Lanka batted again.

    Australia’s last three wickets added 125 runs, enough to propel the side to safety.

    We will bring you the live coverage throughout the game from the SCG and hope to receive your opinions as the action unfolds.

    Geoff Lemon is a writer, editor and broadcaster covering sport for The Roar, The Guardian and ABC, as well as writing on politics, literature and history for a range of outlets.

    He tweets from @GeoffLemonSport.