South Africa beat Sri Lanka in rain-affected Twenty20 International in Centurion
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South Africa beat Sri Lanka in rain-affected Twenty20 International in Centurion

David Miller’s rapid 40 helped South Africa beat Sri Lanka in the Twenty20 International encounter in Centurion after rain forced the match to be a 10-over affair.

cricket Updated: Jan 21, 2017 09:46 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
South Africa national cricket team,Sri Lanka national cricket team,South Africa vs Sri Lanka
South Africa defeated Sri Lanka by 19 runs in a rain-affected Twenty20 International in Centurion to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.(AP)

David Miller’s blazing 40 off 18 balls and a Man of the Match performance on Twenty20 International debut by Lungisani Ngidi helped South Africa beat Sri Lanka by 19 wickets in a match reduced to 10 overs due to rain.

South Africa’s victory prolonged Sri Lanka’s misery on the tour, having recently being whitewashed 3-0 in the Test series.

It was a new look Proteas side for this Twenty20 encounter as they were led by Farhaan Behardien for the first time. The side also featured five debutants in Ngidi, Jon-Jon Smuts, Theunis de Bruyn, Mangaliso Mosehle and Andile Phehlukwayo. For Sri Lanka, Thikshila de Silva made his debut. Sri Lanka won the toss and chose to bowl but immediately, the rain started falling and the match was delayed for over two hours.

On resumption, the match was reduced to 10 overs but South Africa struggled to get going and at 54/3 in the fifth over, Sri Lanka had the upper hand. However, Miller and skipper Behardien shared a 51-run stand off just 19 balls to turn the momentum back for South Africa. In the eighth over bowled by Mathews, Miller smashed two fours and a six while another big six in the ninth over bowled by Kulasekara helped the hosts go past 100. Although they lost quick wickets, South Africa piled on 126/5 in 10 overs.

Chasing 127, Niroshan Dickwella and Dhananjaya de Silva strung a 59-run opening stand but when both were dismissed by Imran Tahir, the game swung once again. Ngidi ensured that South Africa would be on course for a win as he snapped the wickets of Seekkuge Prasanna and Angelo Mathews to finish with figures of 2-0-12-2. A tight last over from Phehlukwayo gave South Africa the victory and a 1-0 lead in the series.

The second Twenty20 International takes place on January 22 in Port Elizabeth

First Published: Jan 21, 2017 09:10 IST