Sri Lanka vs South Africa 2nd ODI: Dilshan and Malinga help Sri Lanka even series

Dilshan excelled with both the bat and ball

Dilshan excelled with both the bat and ball

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Sri Lanka opener Tillakaratne Dilshan smashed an entertaining 86 and took three wickets, and pace bowler Lasith Malinga claimed four wickets to help Sri Lanka not only register an 87-run victory over South Africa in the second ODI in Pallekele, but also even the series at 1-1.

However, South Africa opening batsman Hashim Amla deserves a huge amount of credit as he scored his second consecutive century.

Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews would have been regretting his decision to bat first early on after opening batsman Kusal Perera was caught by Amla at short midwicket off the bowling of Vernon Philander for seven runs.

Kumar Sangakkara only made seven runs before he was caught behind off the bowling of Morne Morkel.

Dilshan and Lahiru Thirimanne stabilised the innings with a 62-run partnership, during which Dilshan brought up his half-century, before Thirimanne was caught by Amla at deep midwicket off the bowling of Imran Tahir for 36.

Dilshan went on to score 86 off 90 balls, which included nine boundaries, before he was clean bowled by Jean Paul (JP) Duminy.

Mathews and Mahela Jayawardene kept the runs flowing with a 71-run partnership before Jayawardene was cleaned up by Tahir for 48.

Following Jayawardene’s dismissal, Sri Lanka lost a flurry of wickets thanks to Ryan McLaren as they went from 225/5 to 267 all out.

McLaren ended up being the pick of the bowlers with four wickets, while Tahir and Philander snapped up two wickets apiece and Duminy and Morkel chipped in with one wicket each.

Chasing 268 to win, South Africa got off to a horrible start as opening batsman Quinton de Kock was clean bowled by Malinga for four runs.

Jacques Kallis failed to have an impact with the bat as he was caught behind off the bowling of Malinga for only one run.

Hashim Amla and captain AB de Villiers stabilised the innings with a 75-run partnership, during which Amla brought up his half-century, before de Villiers was caught by Thisara Perera, who was the substitute fielder, at long-on off the bowling of Dilshan for 29.

Duminy only made one run before he was caught behind off the bowling of Ajantha Mendis.

David Miller mustered four runs before he was caught by Sachithra Senanayake at extra cover off the bowling of Dilshan.

McLaren scored three runs before he was caught by Nuwan Kulasekara at point off the bowling of Senanayake.

Philander accumulated one run before he was caught behind to become Dishan’s third victim of the match.

Amla and Dale Steyn steadied the innings with a valiant 53-run partnership, during which Amla brought up his 14th ODI century, before he was caught by Senanayake at midwicket off the bowling of Malinga.

Amla’s outstanding knock of 101 came off 102 balls and included 10 boundaries.

Amla scored his second consecutive century

Amla scored his second consecutive century

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Malinga struck again just two balls later when he shattered Morkel’s stumps to dismiss him for a duck.

South Africa were bowled out for a dismal 180 when Steyn was given out lbw off the bowling of Mendis.

Steyn reviewed the decision immediately since he was the last batsman, but replays showed that the ball was going on to hit the top of off stump. This led to the third umpire upholding the original decision.

Malinga was the most successful bowler with four wickets, while Dilshan took three, Mendis picked up two and Senanayake claimed one.

Malinga dismissed de Kock, Kallis, Amla and Morkel

Malinga dismissed de Kock, Kallis, Amla and Morkel

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

De Villiers was disappointed with his team’s performance, and said: “Thought we started really slowly with the ball. Still in with a chance. We pulled it back to 260 from 300 and above. Hash played an amazing innings and not enough partnerships around him. I got out to a soft dismissal. Dale showed that if you spent enough time you could do it. I got out but there are other batsmen too.”

Mathews was ecstatic to have levelled the series at 1-1, and said: “I was a bit concerned after we collapsed, thought 30-40 runs short. Dilshan played a great knock. All spinners contributed. We knew the South Africans were coming hard at us. Looking forward to the third game.”

Dilshan was named Man of the Match, and said: “I’m really enjoying playing here in Pallekele. I got the message that 260-270 was a good total. It turned later in the evening. Not easy to bowl with the new rules, but I’m enjoying it. I have returned from Tests and I am focusing on the next World Cup now.”

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