Australia v Sri Lanka, 1st Test: Mike Hussey hits century as Sri Lanka suffer
Last Updated: December 15, 2012 12:53pm
Mike Hussey registered his third century in four matches before Australia declared on 450-5 on a rain-affected second day of the first Test against Sri Lanka.
Hussey was unbeaten on 115, with Matthew Wade on 68 not out at the other end, when Michael Clarke called them in, allowing his bowlers enough time to reduce Sri Lanka to 87-4 at stumps.
Hussey's fine recent form is not in question, but there was a major element of fortune in his 19th Test century as he really should have been out on the shot that brought up three figures, with Angelo Mathews failing to take a catch at deep midwicket and the ball rolling away for four.
Having survived, he was able to see the funny side and soon after smashed Shaminda Eranga for a six. Two overs later, Australia were walking off.
The only Australia wicket to fall had come early in the day, with the hosts adding just five runs to their overnight score of 299-4 before Clarke was out, caught in the slips by Kumar Sangakkara after edging a delivery from Eranga.
But Hussey picked up the baton as he took his overnight 37 on to reach lunch on 66, and together with Wade they put on 146 runs to encourage their captain to make an attacking declaration.
Sri Lanka stuttered in reply, losing inexperienced opener Dimuth Karunaratne and then stalwarts Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene before Thilan Samaraweera fell off what turned out to be the final delivery of the day.
Karunaratne was the first to depart, getting cramped up by a Ben Hilfenhaus away-swinger and edging one behind to Wade with the score on 25.
Elder statesman Sangakkara was the next to go, chasing a wide one from Peter Siddle and finding the hands of Hussey, who took a smart catch in the gully.
Sri Lanka really needed Jayawardene to hang around and he suggested he might as he tucked away two successive fours off Mitchell Starc, but as the score ticked on to 70 he lost his wicket.
Shane Watson rapped him on the knee-roll of his pad and to the naked eye it looked out and was duly given as so. Perhaps out of desperation he reviewed it, but was soon walking off.
Tillakaratne Dilshan at least went along nicely, making an unbeaten 50 off 82 balls, but only when a miscued pull off Watson fell safe, although he was left without a partner at the end, Samaraweera failing to take his bat into day three as he misread a slider from Lyon and feathered one to Wade.
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