Kusal Mendis and Oshada Fernando react within the area © Getty Pictures
Sri Lanka 154 (Dickwella 42, Rabada Four-38) and 197 for two (Mendis 84*, Oshada 75*, Olivier 1-46) beat South Africa 222 (De Kock 86, Vishwa Three-62, Rajitha Three-67) and 128 (Du Plessis 50*, Lakmal Four-39, de Silva Three-36) by eight wickets
Sri Lanka arrived in South Africa in a state of utter turmoil – each on and off the sector. After lower than seven days of cricket, they’ve grow to be solely the third visiting aspect – after England and Australia – and the primary Asian crew to clinch a Check sequence in South Africa.
It was Kusal Mendis, who spearheaded the well-known win with a regal, unbeaten 84 off 110 balls in a chase of 197. He discovered an adventurous accomplice in Oshada Fernando, who struck 75 not out in 106 balls, and so they peeled off 163 off 213 balls – the primary century stand of the sequence to usher Sri Lanka to the goal.
When the day started, it was nonetheless anyone’s recreation: Sri Lanka wanted 137 runs and South Africa eight wickets. However Sri Lanka finally stormed to victory with out shedding even a single wicket.
Mendis, particularly, rolled out one rollicking drive after one other and collared South Africa’s seam assault. As soon as left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj was recalled, Oshada twinkled down the observe and launched him in the direction of the sight display screen. Mendis was the primary to boost his half-century, off 52 balls, with a straight drive off Dale Steyn within the 29th over. Three overs later, Oshada moved to his maiden fifty in his fourth Check innings with a full-blooded back-foot whip between midwicket and mid-on off Maharaj.
Rabada had cranked his tempo as much as speeds within the increased 140kph vary, however Mendis and Oshada subtle his menace with out a lot bother. And when something was remotely vast of off, they went after it like they owned it. Duanne Olivier hit the deck arduous, like he has been doing via the summer time, however Oshada took him on with daring hooks. What about Steyn? Mendis took him for a triptych of drives in his first over of the day, the choose of them a straight hit that almost put Oshada in peril. And identical to that, the hundred stand got here off 126 balls.
The closest South Africa got here near selecting up a wicket was when Mendis flashed an outdoor edge, however Hashim Amla couldn’t latch on to an overhead catch at first slip. Mendis was on 70 and Sri Lanka wanted simply 32 at that time. Mendis and Oshada knocked them off in fuss-free vogue to cap one other monumental victory for Sri Lanka.
Deivarayan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo
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