1st Test South Africa v Sri Lanka: Proteas fight back on Day 2
Sri Lanka were bowled out by South Africa and, with Dhananjaya de Silva unable to bat again, totalled 396-9, in their 1st Innings of the 1st Test at Supersport Park, Centurion today.
In reply, the Proteas were 317 - 4 , at the close of play, trailing Sri Lanka by 79 runs.
Dean Elgar, Aiden Markram and Faf du Plessis all hit half-centuries as the Proteas enjoyed one of their strongest batting displays for nearly two years on the second day of the first Betway Test against Sri Lanka at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Sunday.
Opener Elgar fell five short of a century by striking a confident 95 (130 balls, 16 fours) and shared in a fluent first wicket partnership of 141 with Markram, who marked his recall to the national team with 68 (94 balls, 14 fours).
Former captain Du Plessis, playing his first Test match since standing down as skipper, ended the day well with an unbeaten 55 (81 balls, 9 fours) - South Africa reaching stumps on 317 for four.
That left them trailing the tourists by 79 runs on what was another busy day all-round.
It started with debutant Luthu Sipamla making amends for a tough day one by finishing as the pick of the bowlers with four for 76, the Sri Lankans slipping from 340 for six overnight to 396 all out.
But it was tough going initially with the daring Dasun Shanaka (66 not out off 87 balls, 3 fours, 5 sixes) proving difficult to dislodge.
The all-rounder put on 67 with Kasun Rajitha (12) to leave the home side sweating, the total at stage leaving the islanders in the pound seat on 387 for six.
But Sipamla finally got the ball to talk late on, removing the last three wickets for the addition of nine runs, including claiming two wickets in two balls – Sri Lanka all out in 96 overs.
It was then over to South Africa’s batsmen, who had struggled to get going in recent months.
Not since their 2018/19 home series against Pakistan had they batted confidently and openers Markram and Elgar revived those fond old memories with a bold opening stand that lasted 28.4 overs.
However, it ended with a loose drive by Markram off Vishwa Fernando that flew straight to backward point.
Rassie van der Dussen managed just 15 in a stand of 59 with Elgar, before both men fell with the total on 200.
Twenty runs later and a fine Wanindu Hasaranga delivery on debut sent captain Quinton de Kock (18) on his way, the bowler earning his maiden Test wicket in the process.
But Du Plessis and Temba Bavuma (41 not out) added an unbroken 97 together for the fifth wicket to maintain the momentum and leave their side well-placed heading into day three.
Sri Lanka 396 – 9
South Africa 317 - 4
Close of Play – South Africa trail Sri Lanka by 79 runs
Stumps, day two— ICC (@ICC) December 27, 2020
Faf du Plessis and Temba Bavuma have seized momentum back for South Africa with an unbeaten 97-run partnership ???? #SAvSL SCORECARD ?? https://t.co/5jzy9lhScF pic.twitter.com/inXky059xS
Sri Lanka Fall of wickets: 1-28 (Dimuth Karunaratne - 4.5 ov), 2-54 (Kusal Mendis - 9.5 ov), 3-54 (Kusal Perera - 10.5 ov), 4-284 (Dinesh Chandimal - 65.4 ov), 5-296 (Niroshan Dickwella - 70.3 ov), 6-320 (Wanindu Hasaranga - 76.3 ov), 7-387 (Kasun Rajitha - 93.2 ov), 8-387 (Vishwa Fernando - 93.3 ov), 9-396 (Lahiru Kumara - 95.6 ov)
South Africa - Aiden Markram, Dean Elgar, Rassie van der Dussen, Faf du Plessis, Quinton de Kock(c)(wk), Temba Bavuma, Wiaan Mulder, Keshav Maharaj, Anrich Nortje, Lutho Sipamla, Lungi Ngidi
Sri Lanka - Dimuth Karunaratne(c), Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Dinesh Chandimal, Dhananjaya de Silva, Niroshan Dickwella(wk), Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Vishwa Fernando, Kasun Rajitha, Lahiru Kumara
Start Time: 08:00
Toss: Sri Lanka won the toss and decided to bat
Venue: Supersport Park, Centurion
Officials: Adrian Holdstock, Marais Erasmus, Allahudien Paleker, Bongani Jele, Andrew Pycroft
© Cricket World 2020