Sri Lanka in South Africa, 2 Test Series, 2019
Venue: St George's Park, Port Elizabeth
Date: 21 February-25 February, 2019
RR: 4.31 |
Monumental! Epic! Unimaginable! Use whichever adjective you want, but trust me it will still fall short of describing what we have just witnessed. Sri Lanka have just become the first Asian team to win a series in South Africa. And what is more surprising is the ease in which they have made history today. The overnight pair of Kusal Mendis and Oshada Fernando have not even given a glimmer of hope as they stitched an unbeaten 163-run stand to win this game.
Lunch has been extended by 15 minutes extra as the runs needed is in single digits.
Keshav Maharaj is back into the attack.
Wiaan Mulder is on now.
Duanne Olivier is back on. Faf du Plessis trying everything here.
DRINKS! It has been a good hour for Sri Lanka. They are cruising along and have rarely given an opportunity for the hosts to come back. On the other hand, the South African bowlers have looked off color. They need wickets in heaps to get back into this game. 64 more runs needed, this game could probably end in this session itself.
Kagiso Rabada is back.
Keshav Maharaj is on now.
Dale Steyn is into the attack.
Meanwhile, Lasith Embuldeniya is seen in a sling and trying to hold a bat some how. Shows us how much this means to the Lankans, this guy might just come out to bat if absolutely needed!
Kagiso Rabada to bowl from the other end.
We are all set for the action to begin. The players and umpires are out in the middle. Oshada Fernando and Kusal Mendis are to continue batting. Duanne Olivier will start the proceedings on Day 3.
As for the hosts, they will desperately look for early wickets this morning under the cloudy conditions. It may just set the cat amongst the pigeons in the opposition dressing room. Steyn and Co. are definitely capable of triggering a collapse but the pressure is on the Proteas bowlers as well. To avoid losing a rare Test series at home, they will need to bowl really well. When such a situation arises, it could more often than not result in mistakes occurring. That can be ill-afforded today, the fielders have to hold on to every catch that comes their way and put their body to the sword to try and stop every single run possible. The series on the line, a brilliant and nerve-wracking day of Test cricket in the offing. Emotions running high and can't wait? Neither can we... the first ball is not far away!
Hello and welcome to Day 3 and what most probably will be the final day of this engrossing and absolutely thrilling 2-match Test series. The team from the Emerald Isle is on the brink of creating history by becoming the first Asian team to win a Test series in South Africa, requiring just 137 runs to win the second Test. They have 8 wickets in hand, but need to guard against crumbling under the pressure of expectations. Sri Lanka are very close to doing something no team has done before but that could be the very reason they might give a sniff to the home team to make a comeback in this game. Thus, the visitors would be better off in just playing this like any other game and doing the basics, not thinking about what they could achieve.
... Day 3, Session 1 ...
Now then, 18 wickets fell today and the Test has been more or less dominated by the bowlers. Will we see the same on the third day? South Africa will surely want that. Sri Lanka on the other hand, know just one good session and the game is theirs. Pressure is on South Africa, they are 1-0 down in the series, they are slightly on the back foot here. Will they rise up to the occasion or will the Lankans make history? Join us on Saturday to find out. It could and should be the last day of this Test match, beginning at 1000 local (0800 GMT). Till then, take care and goodbye!
Earlier in the day, the Lankans were bundled out in the first session and they conceded a lead of 68. Then, their bowlers bounced back in some style. They bowled the hosts out for 128 and ensured they are chasing something below 200. They now end the day with 8 wickets in hand and needing another 137 runs.
Their openers started off well but then two quick wickets put them on the back foot. However, Mendis and Fernando played their shots and are amidst a 26-run stand. They have looked positive but need to continue in the same manner. South Africa on the other hand have bowled well, Rabada and Olivier especially with their pace but the Lankans managed to play them out fairly well. Maharaj who bowled the last over got some assistance from the surface and he will surely have to play an important role on Day 3.
What a day of Test cricket we witnessed! In the end, one can say it is the Lankans who will walk off the park as the happier of the two. Yes, they have lost two wickets but have managed to wipe out 60 runs off the target.
Keshav Maharaj to probably bowl what will be the last over of the day.
Kusal Mendis is the new batsman in.
Duanne Olivier is into the attack.
Oshada Fernando is the new batsman in.
Meanwhile, the Sun has come out and it has become bright out there once more!
Karunaratne is on his haunches following the second blow. Needs some time to compose himself... There is even a check of the centre guard, important to make sure that there is no breakage there.
It has got really dark out there. The umpires are willing to continue though.