Marsh: Any lead is a positive in tough Colombo conditions


Shaun Marsh was not disappointed by Australia's inability to build a commanding lead on day three of the final Test with Sri Lanka.

Australia have already lost the three-match series but, in their bid to claim a consolation, scored 300 for the first time in the series having failed to do so in their previous four innings.

Centuries from Marsh (130) - playing in his first Test since December of last year - and captain Steve Smith (119) helped Australia to 379 in response to Sri Lanka's 355, though the lead could have been bigger had Rangana Herath (6-81) not ripped through much of the middle and lower order.

Nightwatchman Dilruwan Perera was trapped lbw by Mitchell Starc before the close, with Sri Lanka ending on 22-1, still two runs behind going into day four in Colombo.

Asked about Australia's failure to build on Marsh and Smith's 246-run partnership at a media conference, Marsh said: "Any lead is a positive, we all know in these conditions over here it's really hard facing some quality spinners.

"Maybe we would have liked a few more but we've just got to get out here tomorrow and play well and we're right in the game.

"It's pretty evenly balanced at the moment, really important first session tomorrow, if we can try and get a few early wickets and put them under pressure, try and keep them down to as low of a total as possible."