South Africa blow Sri Lanka away in first Test
Two Royal Challengers Bangalore players had contrasting games as South Africa inflicted a defeat on Sri Lanka by a margin of an innings and 81 runs in the first Test between the two sides played at the SuperSport Park in Centurion.
RCB batsman- wicketkeeper AB de Villiers top scored for SA with 99 in their only innings while SL captain Tillakaratne Dilshan managed only 12 runs in SL’s two innings.
South Africa’s Vernon Philander continued his impressive debut season, picking up 5/53, his third five wicket haul in three Tests as Sri Lanka were bowled out for 180 in their first innings having been put into bat by SA skipper Graeme Smith on Day 1.
Dilshan had been the first Sri Lankan wicket to fall, playing a very irresponsible shot when he was on 6 and SL on 11 in the fifth over of the match. Steyn, Philander and company blew through the resistance they faced to bowl out SL for 180 in just 47.4 overs.
After an opening stand of 88, SL’s bowlers had reduced SA to 173/5 when AB de Villiers was joined by Ashwell Prince and the duo pulled SA to safety with a 97 run partnership for the sixth wicket. de Villiers was extremely mindful of the pitch and the opposition, curbing his natural attacking game most of the time and selecting even the balls to be put away very carefully. His 50 had taken 91 balls with six 4s but he added his next 49 runs in just 44 balls, striking six more 4s as he tried to accelerate the tempo. de Villiers made 32 of the 33 runs he added with Mark Boucher for the seventh wicket and very sportingly accepted the fielder’s word on a doubtful looking catch at point when he was on 99.
SA posted 411 in their first innings, taking a first innings lead of 231 over Sri Lanka before they were bowled out in the first session on Day 3. Vernon Philander greeted Sri Lanka’s batsmen with a magnificently hostile spell, getting Dilshan to play down the wrong line for the Lankan skipper to once again be the first SL wicket to fall, this time in the fourth over of the innings. Dilshan made 6 before edging one to the keeper Boucher who just managed to take the catch at the last possible moment.
Mahela Jayawardene was run out on 9999 Test runs and brief lower order resistance delayed the end before Sri Lanka were finally bowled out for 150 in just 39.1 overs, handing SA a win by an innings and 81 runs before play could even go into the third session of Day 3.
Vernon Philander ran through SL a second time in three days, taking 5/49, his fourth five wicket haul in just his third Test and his stupendous match haul of 10/102 earned him the Man of the Match award.