Sri Lanka collapsed in a heap yet again, to succumb to a 113-run loss to South Africa in the 2nd ODI between the two sides at the Supersport Park, Centurion, a short while ago.
Despite losing a few early wickets, a 40-run partnership between Kusal Mendis and Oshada Fernando steadied Sri Lanka’s innings, before another mix-up between the pair, handed the initiative back to the hosts. Both Mendis and Fernando had looked comfortable in the middle, till then, working the ball into the gaps quite easily before a direct hit from Andrich Nortje caught Mendis short of his crease. The pair were also involved in a mix-up in the 1st ODI which saw Fernando miss out half-century on debut.
Earlier in the day, Man of the Match Quinton de Kock, who has been in a purple patch during this tour, got the hosts off to a flier, blasting Vishwa Fernando for 16 runs in the 2nd over of the game. Fernando was taken out of the attack but the runs kept flowing as Sri Lanka gave away far too many loose balls in the early exchanges.
Reeza Hendricks too got into the act, as South Africa cruised to 75/0 in the 1st 10 overs. Captain Lasith Malinga was the man to make the breakthrough, when Hendricks hit one to the man at fine-leg. Faf du Plessis and de Kock kept the runs ticking over and the wicket-keeper batsmen looked in ominous form, as he went from 79 to 94 in one over, smashing Dhananjaya de Silva to all parts.
De Kock had looked like getting a hundred, as he had on every other time he crossed the 50-run mark this tour, but went for one shot too many, skying one to Niroshan Dickwella off Thisara Perera.
Wiaan Mulder was promoted to No. 5, ahead of David Miller, and creamed Kasun Rajitha for 16 in the 24th over, but didn’t last too long, bowled around his legs by Vishwa Fernando.
South Africa were forced to consolidate and du Plessis got through to another half-century, but he was fighting a lone battle once again and once Sri Lanka got through him, they just kept picking up the wickets to dismiss South Africa for a well below par 251.
Thisara Perera, playing his 150th ODI was the man who got the breakthroughs for Sri Lanka, while De Silva proved his worth with the ball once again, finishing with figures of 2/55.
Malinga and Akila Dananjaya finished things off with a wicket apiece at the death, leaving Sri Lanka to get 252 to level the series.
Despite looking like a below par score, 251 proved to be more than enough for the hosts, as Sri Lanka threw away the opportunity to level the series, playing far too many rash shots.
Many of Sri Lanka’s wickets fell as a result of wild slogs, something the batsmen seemed determined to do, despite the team not requiring more than 6 an over for much of the innings.
Among the more disappointing dismissals were those of the two openers. Avishka Fernando, of whom much was expected, got off the mark with a boundary but played across the line one too many times to be bowled by Lungi Ngidi while Niroshan Dickwella skied one, trying to smash the ball over the boundary in the 3rd over of the innings.
Giving the batsmen the freedom to play their shots had worked for Sri Lanka in the Tests, but tonight, they were made to look quite silly, bowled out for 138 in 32.2 overs.
Sri Lanka will now have to win all three remaining games, if they are to win the series.
SA won by 113 runs
South Africa’s Innings
|Quinton de Kock||c N Dickwella b T Perera||94||70|
|Reeza Hendricks||c A Dananjaya b L Malinga||29||41|
|Faf du Plessis||b T Perera||57||66|
|Rassie vd Dussen||c K Rajitha b T Perera||2||4|
|Wiaan Mulder||b V Fernando||17||11|
|David Miller||st N Dickwella b D De Silva||25||36|
|Andile Phehlukwayo||c A Fernando b D De Silva||2||5|
|Kagiso Rabada||c N Dickwella b K Rajitha||3||6|
|Anrich Nortje||lbw by L Malinga||8||18|
|Lungi Ngidi||st N Dickwella b A Dananjaya||6||11|
|Imran Tahir||not out||1||3|
|Dhananjaya de Silva||8||0||55||2||6.88|
Sri Lanka’s Innings
|Niroshan Dickwella||c de Kock b K Rabada||6||10|
|Avishka Fernando||b L Ngidi||10||9|
|Kusal Janith||c D Miller b A Nortje||8||23|
|Oshada Fernando||lbw by A Nortje||31||45|
|Kusal Mendis||(runout) A Nortje||24||31|
|Dhananjaya de Silva||c du Plessis b K Rabada||15||26|
|Thisara Perera||c D Miller b I Tahir||23||23|
|Akila Dananjaya||c W Mulder b K Rabada||4||16|
|Kasun Rajitha||lbw by I Tahir||0||1|
|Lasith Malinga||c D Steyn b L Ngidi||1||4|
|Vishwa Fernando||not out||2||6|