BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — Jhye Richardson took three wickets for 26 runs in his test debut to help Australia bowl out Sri Lanka for 144 on the opening day of the day-night test at the Gabba on Thursday.
Richardson’s ball to Sri Lanka’s best batsman, Kusal Mendis, was easily the highlight of the day, nipping in and taking the right-hander’s off stump after Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat.
After being bowled out a half-hour into the final session, Australia was 72 for two in reply at stumps.
Mitchell Starc, in his 50th match, became the 17th Australian to reach 200 test wickets. Also, Pat Cummins took four wickets.
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Niroshan Dickwella led Sri Lanka with 64 runs.
Former England captain Michael Vaughan, commentating on the match, had high praise for Richardson ahead of the Ashes this year in England: “Forget him just getting on a plane, he starts the first test at Edgbaston for me.”
Called into the team to replace the injured Josh Hazlewood, Richardson’s first career wicket was Sri Lanka captain Dinesh Chandimal with a ball that moved slightly away from the right-hander on 5. Then he clean-bowled Mendis on 14.
Mendis was one of only two players to pass 1,000 runs in test cricket last year.
Richardson then backed it up with the wicket of Dhananjaya de Silva, this time with a ball that swung away and caught the edge.
The dismissals of recalled opener Joe Burns and Usman Khawaja took away from Australia’s strong day, with Burns edging one off Suranga Lakmal for 15 and Khawaja chopping Dilruwan Perera on 10 minutes before stumps for 11.
That brought nightwatchman and spin bowler Nathan Lyon to the crease and he and opener Marcus Harris got through the danger period against the pink ball. Harris will resume on 40 on Friday while Lyon has yet to score.
The crowd of 13,900 was far less than the 42,000 capacity at the Gabba.
Sri Lanka has never won a test match in Australia.
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