Lunch South Africa 73 for four (Markram 37*, Vishwa 2-18) v Sri Lanka
5 days after being concerned in an epic last-wicket stand with Kusal Perera, left-arm seamer Vishwa Fernando ambushed South Africa’s high order and raised Sri Lanka’s hopes of changing into the primary Asian aspect to clinch a Take a look at collection in South Africa.
Captain Dimuth Karunaratne additionally contributed to Sri Lanka’s early surge on a grassy St George’s Park observe, bowling his reverse quantity Faf du Plessis off what turned out to be the final ball earlier than lunch. South Africa have been 73 for four on the break.
Vishwa hit speeds north of 140kph and used his angles cleverly, however it was the late swing that posed a much bigger risk. It was that late swing that knocked over Dean Elgar and Hashim Amla off successive balls. After teasing Elgar with some outswingers, he acquired one to snake again in sharply and storm by way of his defences for six.
Elgar wore a surprised mullet look that wasn’t too dissimilar to Amla’s response after he himself was bowled by way of the gate subsequent ball. It was the primary time in 214 Take a look at innings that Amla had been dismissed first ball. Within the subsequent over, the panic swelled to a crescendo when Temba Bavuma ran himself out whereas making an attempt a non-existent single.
Vishwa then pinged du Plessis on the glove and saved hitting the splice. On the different finish, Suranga Lakmal or Kasun Rajitha probed away exterior off, however du Plessis and Markram knuckled down to provide the innings some route.
Du Plessis largely performed near his physique and grew extra snug as soon as Lasith Embuldeniya was launched into the assault. He laced the rookie left-arm spinner by way of extra-cover to usher his aspect previous fifty within the 21st over.
Markram, who was unsure towards swing within the early exchanges, additionally acquired going with a agency cowl drive off Embuldeniya. Nonetheless, on the stroke of lunch, Karunaratne introduced himself on instead of Embuldeniya and acquired one to creep underneath the defences of du Plessis to snap a strong 58-run stand.