Kandy: Sri Lanka, trailing by 237 runs in the first innings, were 223/2 in their second knock at stumps on the fourth day of the second Test against Australia.
The experienced pair of Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene will resume on 69 and 38 respectively when the last day of the match gets underway at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium on Monday.
Just two wickets fell throughout the fourth day, with the latter coming from an unlikely source - the part-time medium pace of Michael Hussey.
Surviving opener Tharanga Paranavitana (55) was the victim, given out on video review after a faint edge to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.
But Sangakkara and Jayawardene proved to be in a determined mood, and the former's patient half century could prove vital in Sri Lanka's bid to salvage a draw.
Earlier, the hosts lost captain Tillakaratne Dilshan for 36 in the penultimate over of the morning session.
A brief rain delay may have unsettled the Sri Lankan skipper.
He had appeared set and relatively untroubled by Australia's attack, but was tempted into a drive off the bowling of Ryan Harris (1-43) and could only manage to send an edge straight to the hands of Shane Watson at slip.
Trent Copeland (0-22) and Mitchell Johnson (0-29) carried the bulk of the bowling workload without reward, but were at least economical.
Nathan Lyon (0-52) and Watson (0-34) were similarly empty handed, but also more expensive, as was Harris for his lone scalp.
Sri Lanka 174 and 223 for 2 (Sangakkara 69*, Paranavitana 55)
Australia 411 for 7 dec
Status Sri Lanka trial by 14 runs