Dilshan leads Sri Lanka cricket fightback
Tillakaratne Dilshan led a counter-attack with an gutsy century as Sri Lanka trailed Australia by 141 runs with two days to play in the Hobart test yesterday.
Dilshan batted intelligently for almost seven hours for his 147 and shared in a record Sri Lanka stand in Australia with Angelo Mathews to get the tourists to within 114 runs of the home side's first-innings total of 450 for five declared.
The Australians tightened their grip on the match by reaching stumps on the third day at 27 without loss and were in the box seat to press on for their first victory of the domestic summer after losing the recent series to South Africa.
"It is very satisfying, especially as it was against a great bowling attack and in Australia with the extra bounce in the wicket," Dilshan said of his first century in Australia.
"I always try to score runs and I've always been positive throughout my career. I just go for it first ball."
At the close, Ed Cowan was on 16 with David Warner not out on eight.
Sri Lanka, boosted by Dilshan's 15th test century and good efforts from Mathews (75) and Prasanna Jayawardene (40), were bowled out for 336.
Peter Siddle, leading the Australian attack weakened by the loss of injured Ben Hilfenhaus, knocked over the Sri Lankan tail to finish with five for 54 off 25.3 overs.
"It's about pressing forward tomorrow, obviously it's going to be hard to start [this] morning for the batters, but they'll dig in and we've just got to play it from there and see how we go and see what target we can go with," Siddle said.