Proteas in trouble despite Hashim Amla ton

2014-07-26 15:24

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Colombo – SA captain Hashim Amla remained unbeaten after his 22nd test hundred, but off-spinner Dilruwan Perera’s career best figures gave Sri Lanka a big first innings lead at the end of the third day of the second Test on Saturday.

SA were dismissed for 282 in reply to Sri Lanka’s first innings total of 421. At stumps, Sri Lanka were 11 without loss, a lead of 150. Upul Tharanga was on six and Kaushal Silva was on five.

Amla put on a fine display of concentration and application as he fought hard to give his team a fighting chance of saving the test and preserving their 1-0 lead in the two-match series.

The stylish right-hander, who resumed on 46 today, batted through the innings to remain not out on 139, having batted for eight hours, during which he faced 382 balls and hit 12 fours.

Amla was the only South African batsman to come to terms with the slow, turning pitch as Sri Lankan spinners Perera and Rangana Herath proved a handful.

Sri Lanka’s attempt to finish off the South African innings quickly was not helped by wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella’s missed stumping of Dale Steyn on 19 when the batsman came down the track against Herath.

Steyn was eventually dismissed for 30, but by then he had eaten up valuable time, which Sri Lanka can ill-afford if they are to win the test and draw the series.

Herath got rid of Steyn when the batsman holed out to Kumar Sangakkara at long-off after spending 75 minutes in the middle and facing 71 balls.

The left-arm spinner also accounted for Imran Tahir (15), having him caught at wide mid-off to finish with figures of four for 71.

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