Tea Sri Lanka 161 for 6 (Karunaratne 80*) v South Africa
Tabraiz Shamsi celebrates the wicket of Dhananjaya de Silva © Associated Press
South Africa burrowed their way through Sri Lanka's middle-order with a burst of three wickets for four runs in the middle session, even as Dimuth Karunaratne stood firm on a first-day pitch that is already taking substantial turn. The Sri Lankan opener was the only one in his line-up to move past 26, against a South African attack relying equally on their quicks and spinners.
Kagiso Rabada's two wickets in three balls put Sri Lanka in the precarious position of 119 for 5, while the other major threat was left-arm wristspinner Tabraiz Shamsi, who is playing in his first red-ball Test. Shamsi two strikes – late in both the first and second sessions – tilted the balance of both periods of play South Africa's way, with the other wicket falling to pace spearhead Dale Steyn.
Steyn took one step close to overtaking Shaun Pollock as South Africa's leading Test wicket-taker when he claimed his first wicket of the series. Kusal Mendis, who had settled in, chipped a full ball in the air to gift Rabada a catch at mid-on. Steyn bowled one more over after that and then left the field, pointing to his hamstring. He was only off briefly and returned, but did not bowl again in the session.
Though Steyn also left the field for a short while in the morning session, he has contributed 10 overs to the cause, six more than Vernon Philander, who did not bowl after a four-over opening spell. Philander conceded at more than five runs an over, was unsuccessful in going around the wicket to the left-handers and has not been used since.
Instead, Shamsi and Keshav Maharaj have done the work Philander was being primed for – essentially, the donkey work – but both have been able to attack as well. Maharaj found the first signs of big turn and bounce when a ball pitched on middle stump and was collected by Quinton de Kock over his right shoulder, but Shamsi got the first wicket with spin when he bowled Dhananjaya de Silva through the gate.
That wicket gave South Africa a boost after an energetic morning session from Sri Lanka, in which they achieved their best opening stand in 17 innings, thanks to Karunaratne and Danushka Gunathilaka. Karunaratne was the risk-taker and has provided the only six of the innings so far, albeit almost by accident. He went after a Steyn short-ball and the hook shot sailed over the gap between long-leg and deep-backward-square. Karunaratne did it again in the middle session, gloving the ball past an outstretched de Kock.
Full report to follow
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
No products for "shirts arrow" found.
Latest football scores live. Includes soccer fixtures, table & results.
Who is Kylian Mbappe? Youngest footballer to have won the World Cup at 19
Who is Kylian Mbappe? Meet France’s World Cup star who joins Pele in elite league
Who is Kylian Mbappe? Meet France’s World Cup star who joins Pele in elite list
After Delhi, family of 6 found dead in Jharkhand’s Hazaribagh in suspected mass suicide
Delhi-like mass suicide in Jharkhand’s Hazaribagh? Family of 6 found dead
Currency exchange rates in INR on July 16, 2018
2016 © Tito's Resorts & Hospitalities Pvt Ltd