Siddle responds to Dilshan defiance
Peter Siddle returned 5-54 as Australia retained control of the first Test with Sri Lanka despite Tillakaratne Dilshan’s fine century on day three at Hobart.
Former skipper Dilshan converted his overnight 50 into 147 and received able support from Angelo Mathews, the man tipped to succeed Mahela Jayawardene as Sri Lanka’s next captain.
Mathews contributed 75 as Sri Lanka battled to 336 all out, but that still left Australia 114 ahead on first innings and the hosts duly added a further 27 to their lead, without loss, before stumps were drawn.
For much of the day, Michael Clarke’s men were frustrated as Dilshan and Mathews batted for more than 56 overs in sharing 161 - a Sri Lankan Test record for any wicket in Australia.
Typically strong through the off side, Dilshan scored freely initially but duly reined in his attacking instincts and spent half an hour in the nineties before reaching three figures with a steer behind point off Siddle.
Mathews, who used his feet well to off-spinner Nathan Lyon, displayed similar resilience, only to depart lbw to a nip-backer from Siddle, with a review proving unsuccessful.
Australia could have made another breakthrough soon after, but opted not to review when Dilshan feathered an outside edge through to Matthew Wade off Siddle, with the bowler seemingly oblivious to the nick.
Dilshan was eventually ousted by a superb yorker from Mitchell Starc and there was little resistance thereafter as Siddle - accepting extra responsibility after Ben Hilfenhaus left the field with a side injury - took centre stage.
Prasanna Jayawardene, who made 40, and Rangana Herath each fell lbw to the Victorian seamer. Jayawardene was the victim of a successful review, while Herath was unfortunate that an inside-edge went unnoticed.
Nuwan Kulasekara was then caught on the boundary off Lyon seeking a third six, while Siddle had Chanaka Welegedara caught at gully to complete his sixth five-wicket haul in Tests.
Australia’s openers each survived scares in reaching stumps; Ed Cowan was fortunate not to be given lbw when facing Kulasekara, while David Warner saw an edge fly narrowly wide of second slip.