Port Elizabeth, February 21- 25 at 01:30 PM IST
With one of the most impressive run chases in Test cricket, Vishwa Fernando and Kusal Perera handed Sri Lanka not only an epic win over South Africa but also the series lead by 1-0. With the second test scheduled to begin tomorrow at St George’s Park, Port Elizabeth, the visitors are standing at the verge of scripting history with their first-ever test series win in South Africa.
After being smashed by England at home followed with a bewildering New Zealand and Australia tour, Sri Lankan Lions started as the underdogs in the first test at Durban. The story was also much similar as the visitors were gradually sliding towards the defeat and required 78 runs with just 1 wicket in the bag in the fourth innings. However, at 226 for 9, Vishwa Fernando joined Kusal Perera for the last wicket who snatched victory from the hands of the hosts. His unbeaten 153 of just 200 deliveries handed Sri Lanka a memorable win in Port Elizabeth and an opportunity to seal their first-ever Test series win against South Africa in South Africa.
Meanwhile, bewildered with the thrilling loss, hosts would be hoping to come back more strongly this time. They have a world-beating pace attack along with a stable middle order and would be hoping to capitalize it to level the series with 1-1. They have suffered a blow in bowling as Vernon Philander gets ruled out of the second test following a Grade I hamstring. However, that won’t be of much concern for the hosts as they Wiaan Mulder, Theunis de Bruyn, Zubayr Hamza and others warming up the bench.
So, can Sri Lanka pull off this time? Will wait and watch!
The visitors have never won a Test series in South Africa
The Proteas have never lost a Test match at Port Elizabeth in eleven years
St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth favours fast bowlers way more than spinners. Also, as per weather forecast, scattered showers are expected on the opening day of the second test.
Avg 1st inn score: 304
Avg 2nd inn score: 239
Avg 3rd inn score: 217
Avg 4th inn score: 158
Highest Total: 549/7 (117 Ov) by AUS vs RSA
Lowest Total: 30/10 (18.4 Ov) by RSA vs Eng
Highest Chased: 271/8 (93.3 Ov) by AUS vs RSA
Lowest Defended: 130/10 (58.3 Ov) by Eng vs RSA
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The probable SL vs SA playing 11 is listed below.
Wicketkeeper: Niroshan Dickwella
Batsmen: Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Lahiru Thirimanne, Oshada Fernando, Kusal Perera
All-rounder: Dhananjaya de Silva
Bowlers: Suranga Lakmal, Lasith Embuldeniya, Kasun Rajitha, Vishwa Fernando
Wicketkeeper: Quinton de Kock
Batsmen: Dean Elgar, Aiden Markram, Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis (c), Temba Bavuma
All-rounder: W Mulder
Bowlers: Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Duanne Olivier
Angelo Perera, Dimuth Karunaratne(c), Kusal Perera, Lasith Embuldeniya, Oshada Fernando, Suranga Lakmal, Kasun Rajitha, Vishwa Fernando, Chamika Karunaratne, Mohamed Shiraz, Lakshan Sandakan, Niroshan Dickwella, Lahiru Thirimanne, Kaushal Silva, Kusal Mendis, Milinda Siriwardana and Dhananjaya de Silva
Zubayr Hamza, Quinton de Kock, Faf du Plessis(c), Temba Bavuma, Hashim Amla, Aiden Markram, Dean Elgar, Theunis de Bruyn, Keshav Maharaj, Wiaan Mulder, Duanne Olivier, Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander and Kagiso Rabada
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