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09 February 201512:09

Dominant South Africa downs Sri Lanka

Dilshan hundred in vain; Guptill stars for New Zealand in abandoned game against Zimbabwe

Dominant South Africa downs Sri Lanka - Cricket News
South Africa put up a dominant show to beat Sri Lanka in the second warm-up match of the 2015 World Cup at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Monday (February 9).

Put in to bat, Sri Lanka posted a competitive 279 for 7, courtesy Tillakaratne Dilshan’s century and a half-century from Angelo Mathews, after a lengthy spell of rain curtailed its innings at 44.4 overs. South Africa, which was set a revised Duckworth-Lewis target of 188 in 25 overs, cantered to a five-wicket win despite a late wobble.

Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock gave South Africa a dream start, adding 106 in just 15.1 overs before Rangana Herath drew first blood. De Kock, who scored a 55-ball 66 with six fours and two sixes, edged to Dimuth Karunaratne. Amla, leading the side in the absence of AB de Villiers who sat out due to a sore hip, followed soon after, falling to Herath’s guile for 46.

What looked like a cruise came to a halt as Sri Lanka struck back with two quick wickets for just three runs. Herath got rid of JP Duminy for 17, while Nuwan Kulasekara got the better of David Miller. But although Faf du Plessis fell early, Rilee Rossouw and Vernon Philander shared an unbroken 21-run partnership to take South Africa across the line with three balls to spare.

Barring Herath, none of the Sri Lankan bowlers could create an impact. Returning from injury, Lasith Malinga snared 1 for 29 in his four overs, while Kulasekara took 1 for 18 in two overs.

Earlier, Sri Lanka was off to a shaky start, losing Lahiru Thirimanne early. But Dilshan and Kumar Sangakkara took control with a healthy 76-run stand, before Sangakkara was dismissed for 31 by Imran Tahir.

Dilshan then shared a 74-run third wicket partnership with Karunaratne (46) to take Sri Lanka past 150. He brought up his century along the way, his fourth in eight matches, from 82 deliveries before he was out next ball.

Mathews, the captain, then scored a half-century before rain forced the end of the Sri Lanka innings. Kyle Abbott was the best of the South Africa bowlers, taking 3 for 37 from 6.4 overs while Wayne Parnell returned 2 for 44.
Sri Lanka will take on Zimbabwe in its second warm-up match in Lincoln on Wednesday.

In Lincoln, Martin Guptill’s century was the only highlight of a shoddy New Zealand batting display in its rain-interrupted warm-up match against Zimbabwe.



New Zealand scored 157 for 7 from 30.1 overs before the match was abandoned, with Guptill bringing up his century from 85 balls. He fell soon after without adding to his score, having played a lone hand as New Zealand's batting order caved in around him.

Brendon McCullum, the captain, was the first to fall, for eight after being caught and bowled by Tinashe Panyangara, who struck again to remove the in-form Kane Williamson for six.

Ross Taylor (11), the only other batsman to reach double figures, and Corey Anderson fell to Elton Chigumbura’s pace. While Tom Latham was dismissed off Tafadzwa Kamungozi for nine, Daniel Vettori only made six before falling to Hamilton Masakadza.

New Zealand plays South Africa on Wednesday in its final warm-up game at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch, before kicking off its World Cup campaign against Sri Lanka on Saturday at the same venue.