Australia vs Sri Lanka 3rd Test Live Score | Aus vs SL Live Score
An injury ridden Sri Lankan side will be hoping to salvage some pride and give their out-going skipper Mahela Jayawardene a victorious send-off when they take on Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground. The hosts will also be looking to do something similar - giving Michael Hussey a victorious farewell in the left-hander's final Test match.
Home team captain Michael Clarke vowed to strive for a 3-0 clean sweep in the final Test to give retiring Mike Hussey a fitting send-off. Although a dead rubber, the enthusiasm to sign off on a high will be at the highest for Hussey as well as the rest of the Australian players. Clarke, who declared himself fit to play, announced a line up containing four fast bowlers. Mitchell Starc returns after being rested, joining quicks Peter Siddle, Jackson Bird, and MCG man-of-the-match Mitchell Johnson on a green Sydney wicket. All-rounder Glenn Maxwell was named 12th man, while Usman Khawaja missed out.
Australian batsmen have been contributing their fair share in this series. Both the openers Ed Cowan and David Warner have been giving good starts and the ones to follow - Phil Hughes, Shane Watson, Clarke, Hussey and Wade - have also been in good scoring form. Johnson, who came up with a fine all-round show at the MCG, is in good form according to the skipper and occupies an important position. Australia's bowling attack wields a strong look. Starc returns after a good amount of rest and will be hungry to perform. Siddle and Johnson have also been picking up a fair share of wickets while new-comer Bird, who impressed in his debut Test, will get another chance to show case his skills. With a strong bowling line-up and the batsmen in good touch, Australia are the clear favourites but Clarke will be on the look-out for a fightback from the Lankans and will be hoping for his team to avoid any complacency.
The bruised and battered tourists were thrashed by an innings and 201 runs inside two and a half days at the Melbourne Cricket Ground last week to give Australia an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. They also lost four players to injury which has left the captain struggling to name a side for the New Year Test. While Kumar Sangakkara and Chanaka Welegedara are already out of the series, wicketkeeper Prasanna Jayawardene and fast bowler Nuwan Kulasekara are still major doubts. Although Prasanna would need a late fitness test to determine if he could play at all, let alone keep wickets with an injured thumb, Dinesh Chandimal will definitely replace the injured Sangakkara.
Sri Lanka's batsmen have been a big let-down in this series with the likes of Dilshan, Karunaratne, Samaraweera, Mathews and the skipper not contributing much in terms of runs. Sangakkara, if anything, was the saving for the visitors in the Melbourne Test when he scored a 50 in the first innings as he got past 10000 Test runs. But his unavailability for the remainder of the series means that Sri Lanka will only be left with two experienced batters - Mahela and Dilshan - who need to take the responsibility while the youngsters too must provide their senior colleagues support. Rangana Herath will be the go-to bowler for the Lankans. With the absence of Welegedara for the 3rd Test, Sri Lanka will be hoping for some useful contributions from the likes of Eranga and Mathews while Kulasekara, if fit, will have an important role to play.
Australia (From): Ed Cowan, David Warner, Phillip Hughes, Michael Clarke(c), Michael Hussey, Matthew Wade(w), Mitchell Johnson, Peter Siddle, Nathan Lyon, Jackson Bird, Mitchell Starc, Usman Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell
Sri Lanka (From): Dimuth Karunaratne, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Mahela Jayawardene(c), Thilan Samaraweera, Prasanna Jayawardene(w), Angelo Mathews, Dhammika Prasad, Rangana Herath, Shaminda Eranga, Nuwan Kulasekara, Suraj Randiv, Dinesh Chandimal, Nuwan Pradeep, Tharanga Paranavitana, Suranga Lakmal, Lahiru Thirimanne