Cameron Green has played a key role in the opening Test, guiding Australia into a commanding position with a stellar innings.
Australia holds a commanding position in the opening Test after a tumultuous day two in Galle.
Play was delayed by three hours to start the day after wild weather had lashed Galle, resulting in a grandstand collapse under the intense wind and persistent rain. Luckily no one was in the stand as the temporary roof was ripped off.
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Once the action got underway, it was Usman Khawaja and then Cameron Green who put Sri Lanka to the sword as the Aussies chased down the host’s first innings total.
Green was at his best with the bat in trying conditions as he helped Australia move into the lead before some late heavy hitting by skipper Pat Cummins took the tourists into a dominant position.
“Cameron Green is just a big sponge, learning about Test cricket at an exponential rate and on the most demanding stage possible,” cricket writer Melinda Farrell tweeted. “Crazy talent.”
Former Aussie goalkeeper Brad Haddin was also impressed.
“Great knock from Cameron Green,” Haddin said in a commentary after the all-rounder registered his fifth half-century.
“He’s just getting better and better with every innings. This one will be very special. It’s his fifth half-century, but it’s the way he’s gone about his work today.
“Under pressure, he’s taken the attack back to the Sri Lankan bowlers.
We’re witnessing something special here with Cameron Green. Every Test innings he’s getting better and better. He understands what it takes to build an innings. It’s a very, very classy knock from Cameron Green.
“What I liked about it as well is that it’s been planned. He’s used his feet really well, he had a plan to get off strike and put the pressure back on the Sri Lankan spinners and what that shows in someone so young is that they’re watching the game closely, they’ve learned from the Pakistan series and he’s got a really clear game-plan on the way he wants to do things. ”
Khawaja praised Green for handling the Sri Lankan spinners with aplomb after the two batsmen helped Australia to a 101-run first innings lead on a weather-hit day two of the opening Test.
Replying to Sri Lanka’s 212 all out on the opening day, the tourists reached 313 for eight when bad light stopped playing in Galle.
Cummins, on 26, and Nathan Lyon, on eight, were batting at close of play after the tourists dominated the two sessions on a turning pitch.
The left-handed Khawaja made 71 before 23-year-old Green, who top-scored with 77, was involved in an attacking stand of 84 with wicketkeeper-batsman Alex Carey (45).
“He (Green) batted beautifully,” said Khawaja.
“(It) took a lot of courage the way he batted. He came out and played a sweep shot straight away. That’s not easy.
“That wicket is extremely tough, it’s one of the toughest I’ve played on.”
Khawaja, 35 and a veteran of 49 Tests, said Green’s game is “well beyond where a lot of us were on the sub-continent at 23”.
Recap the days action below.
As the Australia lead etched closer to the 100 mark, Pat Cummins and Nathan Lyon decided to loosen up the shoulders.
Cummins took aim at the spinners as he swung at every delivery coming his way.
He connected with an almighty shot, sending the ball into orbit and out of the stadium as the lead climbed to 101 runs.
The match was brought to a standstill as bad light wreaked havoc and brought about an early end to the days play.
Cummins despatched Vandersay out onto Stadium Road with one of the biggest sixes the ground has ever seen!
Less than an over after Green departed, Mitch Starc was on his way after chipping a delivery back down the pitch into the hands of Jeffrey Vandersay who claims his second Test wicket.
Cameron Green, stand up and take a bow.
The towering all-rounder was at his brilliant best with the willow in hand as he lifted the Aussies over and above Sri Lanka to give the tourists a commanding position on day two in the first Test.
Green survived an early LBW scare, but since has dug in and kept the scoreboard ticking over as he continues to frustrate the Sri Lankan attack.
The blustery conditions saw the spinners with the upper hand earlier in the day as the Aussies simply looked to survive the onslaught.
Such a pivotal innings this from a rising star in Cam Green (great knocks from Khawaja and Carey as well). We’re taking the game away from Sri Lanka here. Digging in and putting up a score without Marnus and Smith contributing. Great to see 👏 Let’s keep going 🤞 #slvaus
Australia looked in a bad state when Usman Khawaja walked back to the changerooms, five wickets down and 55 runs behind on a windy day as the spinners took control.
Enter Alex Carey.
The Aussie keeper has turned the tide and got the run rate ticking along. With Cam Green by his side, Carey has scored 30 runs off 26 balls and got the Aussies to within 10 runs of Sri Lanka’s first innings total.
A perfect delivery from Ramesh Mendis has just missed out on claiming the wicket of Aussie all-rounder Cam Green.
The ball slammed into the pad of Green and Mendis went up defiant the delivery was going on to hit the stumps. Given not out, the locals opted to review the decision and if not for the umpires call, Green would have been on his way.