January 4, 2017 07:16 pm
Their second innings batting performance was nothing to get overly excited about, but South Africa’s 224/7 declared was enough to set Sri Lanka a near impossible 507 for victory in the second Test at Newlands.
At tea on day three, the visitors were 17/1 in their chase.
The wicket came via Vernon Philander, who knocked Dimuth Karunaratne’s (6) leg stump out of the ground just before the end of the second session.
Having started their second innings with a lead of 282, there was always going to be little for the Proteas to achieve.
One hope would have been for those struggling for runs - Hashim Amla, JP Duminy and Temba Bavuma - to play themselves back into form.
Unfortunately, that did not happen.
At lunch, South Africa were 136/4 with the lead sitting at an imposing 418.
Having started the day 35/0, Stephen Cook and Dean Elgar added another 29 runs before Cook was sent packing when he edged to slip off a probing delivery from Suranga Lakmal to cap off a disappointing Test.
That brought Amla to the wicket, who lasted just five balls.
Lakmal was again the wicket-taker, taking his second wicket in the over when he found Amla’s outside edge with another delivery that asked the right questions.
It means that Amla has now gone 10 knocks without a half century.
Elgar, meanwhile, kept ticking along.
He reached his 50 off 82 balls as he continued to cash in on his good form, while Duminy needed a review to save himself from an LBW shout that had originally been given out off the bowling of Nuwan Pradeep.
Elgar was out soon afterwards when he edged Rangana Herath to first slip in the spinner’s first over.
Duminy was looking good for his 30, but he was given out LBW for a second time with what would prove to be the last ball of the session when he missed a straight one to become Lakmal’s third victim.
Bavuma came in after lunch, but was out for 0 when he pushed Herath to mid-off and set off for a single that was never on. A direct hit from Dhananjaya de Silva sent the Lions man on his way.
Quinton de Kock entertained briefly for 29 before he was caught behind off Lahiru Kumara while Du Plessis was caught behind off Lakmal for 41.
When Du Plessis did call for the declaration, Keshav Maharaj was 20* and Philander 15*.