Sri Lanka earned a hard-fought win as they defeated the tourists, SA by 3 runs in a close contest at Pallekale on Wednesday.
It was also their first win in the ODI series. South Africa won the toss and opted to bowl first. Batting first, SL scored 306/7 in the rain-shortened game.
Almost every batsman played their part with Dasun Shanaka scoring 65 runs off just 34 balls that included 5 sixes and 4 fours. Kusal Perera and Thisara Perera contributed 51 and 51* respectively.
Lungi Ngidi and JP Duminy scalped two wickets each.
The rain affected the game on multiple occasions. SA was given a target of 191 runs but they could only manage 187/9 in 21 overs.
The last over proved to be a dramatic one as they required 8 runs of the final 6 balls with David Miller on strike. Lakmal bowled him out and then the tail-enders Junior Dala and Lungi Ngidi fell short by 3 runs. Hashim Amla was the top scorer with 40 runs.
Lakmal picked three wickets while Thisara Perera claimed 2 wickets.
Dasun Shanaka earned Man of the match. “I am happy that I performed well when I got the opportunity in the playing XI. I was not nervous and I enjoyed my batting,” he said.
Sri Lanka skipper finally seemed happy with a win, “It was very important to win today, extremely proud of the way we fought,” he said.
SA’s stand-in captain de Cock said, ” Disappointing to lose a game like that, but it was a good game. I love the responsibility of captaincy.”
Note: SA already have a 3-1 unassailable lead in the 5 match ODI series.