Steven Smith was unbeaten on 61 on Day Two © AFP
Steven Smith was unbeaten on 61 on Day Two © AFP

Reviews, loud shouts, dropped catches, missed opportunities, the Australian pair of Shaun Marsh and captain Steven Smith, withstood everything and hung on, and scored valuable runs, helping their team reach 141/1 on Day Two of the third Test against Sri Lanka. The duo after the loss of David Warner, steered to register Australia’s best partnership stand in the series so far. Though, what was the most crucial aspect in relation to the innings, was the fact that the Australians actually spent a good amount of time in the crease, without losing any more wicket, something that will give come as a morale booster for them as the game progresses. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Sri Lanka vs Australia, 3rd Test at Colombo

If Day Two was more about Dinesh Chandimal’s gritty, patient century knock, finishing at 132 off 356 deliveries, Day Three could well revolve around Australia’s resistance, and their propensity to fight back and retain their No.1 Test crown, while batting positively in the middle. Smith and Marsh, have looked good so far. Day 2, Report: Steven Smith, Shaun Marsh fifties steers Australia to 141/1 at stumps

Smith in particular has used his feet against the spinners. Although there have been moments, where he was beaten by turn and a few straight ones as well from the Lankan spin twins, Dilruwan Perera and Rangana Herath, but he has managed not to give them a chance of sneaking into the Australian middle order. He also reached a personal milestone. Smith became the fourth fastest Australian to reach 4,000 runs in Test cricket. But that perhaps, would have never been on his mind when he came out to bat on Day Two.

Marsh on the other hand, playing his first game in the series, has solidified the top-order, which once looked fragile. He has played some exquisite shots in his innings so far. He would want to convert his fifty into a big one though.

Day Two could also be about the Sri Lankan spinners Perera, Herath and Lakshan Sandakan can bring back the ‘demons’ from Pallekele and Galle to haunt the visitors. The pitch is expected to offer turn to the spinners as the game heads further. The spinners would be wanting those half-chances to go their way. They have bowled better than the Australian spinners, that is for sure. Perhaps they have just been a bit unlucky.

Nevertheless, the Test is in balance as of now, but it won’t take time for things to turn in either team’s favour. We will have to wait for Day Three and see which team can come out on top and take an advantage going forward.

(Karan Dewana reporter with CricketCountry, loves following and playing sports. He is a Team India fan and loves winning. Follow him on his twitter handle @karan13dewan)