Australia vs Sri Lanka 2nd Test Day 1: Burns and Head punish Sri Lanka with career-best knocks

Joe Burns 172 not out Australia Sri Lanka 2nd Test Day 1 Canberra cricket

Joe Burns celebrates after scoring his fourth Test century

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Joe Burns and Travis Head made career-best scores of 172 not out and 161 as Australia tormented Sri Lanka on the opening day of the second Test in Canberra.

Opting to bat first, Australia got off to a poor start as opener Marcus Harris was caught by debutant Chamika Karunaratne at point off the bowling of Vishwa Fernando for 11.

Usman Khawaja failed to trouble the scorers as he was caught by Kusal Mendis at second slip off the bowling of Fernando for a duck.

Marnus Labuschagne only mustered six runs before he was caught behind to give Karunaratne his maiden Test wicket.

However, that was to be Sri Lanka’s last taste of success for a long period of time as Head and Burns not only stabilised the innings, but put Australia firmly in the driver’s seat with their 308-run partnership, during which both batsmen surpassed their hundreds.

With Australia cruising, Sri Lanka did everything in their power to try and end the partnership, but they had to wait for almost 65 overs before they finally got the breakthrough they desperately needed.

It was Fernando who ended the stand between Burns and Head as he trapped Head lbw for a career-best 161, which came off 204 balls and included 21 boundaries and a six.

Burns and Kurtis Patterson kept the scoreboard ticking with an unbeaten 48-run partnership before stumps was called.

Burns finished on 172, which came off 243 balls and included 26 boundaries, while Patterson remained undefeated on 25, which came off 48 deliveries and included two boundaries and a six.

Fernando was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets, while Karunaratne claimed one.

Australia ended day one on 384/4 and will continue batting on Saturday at 10:30 local time or 23:30 GMT (the previous day).

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