Proteas draw first blood in opening T20I clash

The Proteas beat Sri Lanka by 28 runs to go 1-0 up in the three-match T20 international series at the R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium on Friday. It is the ICC T20 World Cup squad’s first outing since their announcement by Cricket South Africa (CSA).

Keshav Maharaj led the team in the injured Temba Bavuma’s stead, winning the toss and electing to bat first. They posted 163/5 at the end of their allotted overs, thanks to strong starts by the top order. Aiden Markram was the leading run scorer with 48 off 33 deliveries (1×4, 2x6s), followed by openers Reeza Hendricks (38 off 30, 3x4s, 1×6) and Quinton de Kock (36 off 32, 3x4s, 1×6).

The opening pair shared a 73-run stand off 59 deliveries before their partnership was terminated by the departure of De Kock at the end of the 10th over. Hendricks did not stick around for much longer after Markram’s arrival and was quickly joined in the hut by Heinrich Klaasen for just two.

It was David Miller (26 off 15, 2x4s, 1×6) who assisted in the revival of the innings by putting on a 65-run partnership for the fourth wicket with Markram to get South Africa to a score that was above par taking the slowness of the pitch into account.

The pick of the Sri Lankan bowling attack was Wanindu Hasaranga de Silva with 2/23 in his four-over spell. The rest of the bowlers did not get the same success as the South Africans were more than ready for the spinner-friendly conditions.

The home team’s reply did not go as they would have hoped. They were restricted to 135/6 in their 20 overs, with the only shining light coming from Dinesh Chandimal’s career-best 66 not out.

All of the visitors’ bowlers returned one wicket each with the exception of Kagiso Rabada, but an overall team effort by the unit yielded the desired results.

South Africa will be anxious to correct the five dropped catches that took place in the match and ensure that that discipline of the game is addressed before the second fixture on Sunday.

Proteas Tour to Sri Lanka Schedule

Sunday, 12 September
2nd T20I (N)
R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium Colombo

Tuesday, 14 September
3rd T20I (N)
R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium Colombo

Issued by: Cricket South Africa – Corporate Communications