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Sri Lanka Seal Historic 2-0 Test Series Whitewash in South Africa

Cricketnext Staff |February 23, 2019, 11:06 PM IST
Sri Lanka Seal Historic 2-0 Test Series Whitewash in South Africa

Sri Lanka beat South Africa by eight wickets in the second and final Test in Port Elizabeth on Saturday (February 23), thus ensuring they whitewashed the hosts 2-0 and became the first Asian side to win a Test series in the country.

Resuming the day on 60/2 with Oshada Fernando and Kusal Mendis at the crease, Sri Lanka got the required runs with minimal fuss as the match ended in the first session of Day 3.

The unbeaten 163-run partnership between Fernando (75*) and Mendis (84*) ensured that the home team made no early inroads and were thus consigned to a heavy defeat in the second Test after narrowly losing the first.

The Proteas bowling line-up – so instrumental to their success against Pakistan in their previous home series – could not produce the goods in the second innings when it mattered most, posing little problems for the batsmen.

In contrast, the foundation for Sri Lanka’s win was laid on Day 2 by their bowlers as after conceding a lead of 68 runs on, the bowlers – led by their ace pacer Suranga Lakmal – ran riot to bundle the hosts for just 128.

Sri Lanka needed just four bowlers to rout South Africa with Lakmal leading the way returning 4/39 in 16.3 overs. De Silva once again proved his worth as he chipped with three wickets.

Amla and Temba Bavuma and later Faf du Plessis did really well to take their side to 90/3. However, just when it seemed the hosts would take a sizeable lead an unprecedented collapse saw them lose their last seven wickets for a mere 38 runs with Lakmal doing the bulk of the damage.

The slide started with the wicket of Amla who edged de Silva straight to first slip where Mendis completed a good catch. Sri Lanka's nemesis Quinton de Kock (1) for once fell cheaply when Lakmal induced a leading edge of his blade to pouch a simple return catch.

Debutant Wiaan Mulder came and went for 5 edging de Silva to Mendis at first slip before Maharaj was undone by a peach of an in-swinger from Lakmal that caught him plumb in front of the stumps for 6.

Rabada and Steyn bagged ducks falling to Lakmal and de Silva respectively as the hosts slipped to 116/9.

Du Plessis tried his best to accumulate some runs reaching his half-century off 70 deliveries which included even fours but the innings soon ended when Lakmal fittingly got the last man Olivier lbw for 6.

Lahiru Thirimanne and Dimuth Karunaratne then gave their side a good start in the second innings, adding 32 runs for the opening wicket but both fell in successive overs much to the delight of the hosts but Fernando and Mendis stuck around to get the job done.

The two teams will now play a five-match ODI series. The first match takes place on March 3 at Johannesburg.

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