Sri Lanka vs South Africa 2nd ODI: De Kock scores 87 as South Africa cruise to victory

Quinton de Kock 87 Sri Lanka South Africa 2nd ODI Dambulla cricket

Quinton de Kock struck his 16th half-century in ODI cricket

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Quinton de Kock struck a brilliant 87 as South Africa waltzed their way to a four-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the second ODI in Dambulla.

Electing to bat first, Sri Lanka made an awful start to their innings as opener Upul Tharanga was caught behind off the bowling of Lungi Ngidi for nine runs on the 11th ball of the match.

The very next ball, Kusal Mendis was on his way back to the pavilion as he was trapped lbw for a golden duck.

Niroshan Dickwella and Kusal Perera managed to add 43 runs to the score before Kusal was caught by Ngidi at mid-on off the bowling of Andile Phehlukwayo for 12 runs.

Dickwella and stand-in captain Angelo Mathews stabilised the innings with a 67-run partnership, during which Dickwella brought up his fifty.

Niroshan Dickwella 69 Sri Lanka South Africa 2nd ODI Dambulla cricket

Niroshan Dickwella scored his sixth ODI fifty

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

He went on to score 69 off 78 balls, which included 10 boundaries, before he was clean bowled by Phehlukwayo.

Sri Lanka began to lose wickets at regular intervals once Dickwella was gone, but Mathews continued taking the attack to the South African bowlers and ended up making an unbeaten 79, which came off 111 deliveries and included six boundaries.

Angelo Mathews 79 not out Sri Lanka South Africa 2nd ODI Dambulla cricket

Angelo Mathews made his 36th ODI fifty

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Thanks to him and Dickwella, Sri Lanka finished on 244/8 off their 50 overs.

Ngidi and Phehlukwayo picked up three wickets apiece, while Kagiso Rabada and Willem Mulder Mulder chipped in with one wicket each.

Chasing 245 to win, the Proteas got off to an excellent start as De Kock and Hashim Amla amassed a 91-run partnership before Amla was caught and bowled by Akila Dananjaya for 43.

Dananjaya then proceeded to remove Aiden Markram for three runs.

However, De Kock and captain Faf du Plessis steadied things with a 53-run stand before De Kock was dismissed by Kasun Rajitha for 87, which came off 78 balls and included 13 boundaries and a six.

Du Plessis went on to make 49 before he was caught and bowled by Dananjaya.

Despite David Miller and JP Duminy falling for three and 32 respectively, Mulder and Phehlukwayo guided South Africa to victory with 43 balls to spare.

Dananjaya was the most successful bowler with three wickets, while Rajitha, Thisara Perera and Suranga Lakmal claimed one wicket each.

Mathews was disappointed to have lost again, and said: “We gave away too many wickets up front. And then we lost wickets at crucial times too, so we never got going. We didn’t hold on to catches as well, and while defending low scores, you need to hold on to every chance. We had a terrible day in the field. Neither did the bowlers bowl well.

“We were a bunch of schoolkids when it came to today’s fielding. Dickwella’s gone for a scan, but he should be okay. Akila is bowling brilliantly, so we do have some positives there. We are still alive in this series. My hands were tied in my knock, because we were losing wickets all the time, but pretty pleased on a personal note.”

Du Plessis was delighted to have taken a 2-0 lead in the series, and said: “These conditions are favourable a bit more. Batting second was going to be tricky, but pleased to see how we played. It was a good one-day wicket. But I’m very pleased at how we are chasing the game. We are staying positive, putting pressure on the opposition and so on.

“Excellent bowling effort by our boys, we kept pulling things back despite Mathews’ knock. Planning and execution was good. My mental focus is on being positive, and I’m not thinking of the lack of fifties personally.”

De Kock was named Man of the Match, and said: “Not sure what the secret to our success is. But yes, it’s spinning less. Nice to know the work you’re doing off the field is paying off. The last tour has been really difficult, and it’s always challenging to bat in the subcontinent. The pitch played the same all day. It was slower as the day progressed, but it was a similar pitch through the game.”

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