Usman Khawaja bounced back as he backed up his 15th half-ton in his Test career.
Khawaja this time remained relaxed to get the job done without the need to rush.
He used every shot of the book having played well as long as the placement is there via the open bat face.
His incumbent partner in the middle, Travis Head stayed on at 27* as both men resumed work after Tea.
Australia soon reached the 150 run mark before Head followed Khawaja with a 50 himself.
Head knew how to get the job done continuing to play his favored cut shot.
It doesn’t matter how he does it in the crease as long as Head maintains his shape to perfect the placement.
That’s what makes Head a great batsman who managed to stay tall & whack them closer to him which made his life easy.
Soon after Australia passed a lead of 500, Khawaja proved the critics wrong when he converted into a century.
It’s the eighth time that Khawaja achieved this ton in his Test career.
Final 3rd Innings Play: Australia 3d-196
Sri Lanka will need 516 runs to win the 2nd Test as the 4th Innings play set to begin shortly.
Though, there will be less than half-hour’s play before the Umpire calls it stumps for the day at 6 PM local time.
Usman Khawaja ended on 101* while Travis Head finished off at 59* with a stand of 159 runs combined.
Lahiru Thirimanne and Dimuth Karunartne fired off steadily with runs on the board for Sri Lanka.
Though, lousy night has effectively ended today’s play as there are two more days of Test Match action left.
Stumps Day 3: Sri Lanka 0-17 & need 498 runs more to win.
Sri Lanka’s Take
Sri Lanka ran out of ideas of finding ways to get rid of Khawaja & Head.
The deliveries went too full and short by missing the stumps which haven’t attacked enough.
So not enough pace involved to make the batsman play a loose shot.
Next time, they will need to attack better and be flexible with the ball in the next few days over in South Africa.
The batting has started okay to have both Openers unbeaten after six overs of play in the 4th Innings.
As long as they block 100s of good balls and play via a straight blade, they’re on the right track.
But the work still needs a lot to get done if Sri Lanka was to make an unlikely win at Manuka Oval.
On the other hand, Australia did very well with the bat.
Travis Head continued to be aggressive and whacked shots everywhere downtown having navigated well with the feet.
Having applied with basics with the technique, Head scored runs quickly as long as the face position stayed still.
And that’s how Head backed up his half-century.
At last, Usman Khawaja silenced the critics with a big ton to himself.
He didn’t need to hesitate or panic having whacked the cross-bat shots as long as the eyes still focus on the ball.
It’s the quick and gentle hands that helped Khawaja made a statement in front of everyone.
Khawaja’s the Australian Hashim Amla having thought he needed to go based on poor form.
But class is permanent when it comes to his experience having spent years in the Australian Test Squad.
So Sri Lanka needs 498 runs to win this game out of a maximum time of two full days to get the job done.
That’s not an easy task for the visitors unless they hammer the basics at all times to see one of their Top 7 batsmen get a 100 or 200.
Australia only needs ten wickets to seal the series with a whitewash of 2-0 to close out the 2018-19 Home International Summer.
For now, Day 3 play has concluded here at Manuka Oval in Canberra.