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Last Updated: Sunday, 19 October, 2003, 07:52 GMT 08:52 UK
Zimbabwe take small lead
Second Test, Sydney: Australia v Zimbabwe

Price took his first ever six-wicket haul
It was a fantastic feeling to get six wickets against these guys because I've been watching them all my life
Ray Price

Australia closed in on victory in the second Test despite Zimbabwe spinner Ray Price's career-best 6-121.

Beginning the third day 245-3, the hosts were kept to 403, even after Ricky Ponting hit 169.

And Zimbabwe had almost regained a first innings deficit of 95 when three quick wickets fell.

When bad light brought a close, the tourists were 151-4 - a lead of 54 that they appeared unlikely to defend.

Against a depleted attack, Zimbabwe squandered a 93-run second-wicket partnership between Mark Vermeulen and Trevor Gripper.

The tourists were within two runs of parity when skipper Steve Waugh took a diving catch at cover to dismiss Vermeulen for 48.

And Trevor Gripper, fell soon afterwards for 47, a second victim for left-arm spinner Simon Katich.

Inbetween, first innings centurion Stuart Carlisle thrashed a Katich long-hop to deep square leg.

But Zimbabwe rallied again in the final half hour with Craig Wishart (32 not out) and Tatenda Taibu (13 not out) guiding them through to the close.

Simon Katich celebrates
Katich added two late wickets to his maiden half-century
Waugh had completed his 48th Test half-century before a 135-run partnership with Ponting was brought to an end by a catch at short leg off Price.

Ponting finally played on to Price as the delivery spun back between his legs after a five-and-a-quarter hour stay, with 23 fours and two sixes.

And Heath Streak bowled Adam Gilchrist for 20 with a perfect inswinging yorker to claim his first wicket of the series.

Price dismissed Ponting, Waugh, Katich, Brad Hogg and last man Brad Williams to claim his second five-wicket haul in his 14th Test.

Katich, playing his first Test since his debut against England at Headingley in August 2001, scored 52 with eight fours - his maiden Test half-century.

Australia: Steve Waugh (captain), Ricky Ponting, Justin Langer, Matthew Hayden, Damien Martyn, Simon Katich, Adam Gilchrist, Andy Bichel, Brett Lee, Brad Hogg, Brad Williams.

Zimbabwe: Heath Streak (capt), Andy Blignaut, Stuart Carlisle, Dion Ebrahim, Gavin Ewing, Trevor Gripper, Douglas Hondo, Raymond Price, Mark Vermeulen, Tatenda Taibu, Craig Wishart.

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