Sri Lanka out to end SA tour on a high note
JOHANNESBURG, Jan 21 - Sri Lanka, inspired by Friday’s great fight
back in Kimberley, are determined to end their six-week tour on a
winning note when they take on South Africa in the fifth and final One
Day International to be played at New Wanderers Stadium here on Sunday
Having already lost the five-match series 1-3 after surrendering
meekly in the first three games, Sri Lanka will make every effort to win
their last outing to regain its lost glory before next month’s tour of
The Lankan team is determined to make every effort to pull off their
second ODI win on tour, after successfully chasing a target of 300 runs
to win last night’s fourth ODI at De Beers Diamond Oval under lights.
Skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan, who hit a run-a-ball 87 to top score
for his team yesterday, said he is happy that the team has found the
winning formula at least by the end of the series that is going to help
in the Tri-Series in Australia next month. “It feels good to score some
runs, but it’s a bit late,” he said.
“The pitch was really good and when Upul (Tharanga) got out, I took a
few chances because we were chasing 300. I just played my own game.
After the Dilscoop went for six, I got more confident,” he said. Dilshan
brought out his signature shot off Vernon Philander’s second ball which
sailed over the fine leg boundary.
Dilshan feels the match in Kimberley should have been a final. “We
need to finish strongly, end the tour on a winning note. That is
important and would be a morale booster for the boys before the
Australia tour. If we could end the series 2-3 after losing the first
three games in-a-row, it will be a fantastic effort,” he said.
But Dilshan is fully aware of the challenge they face even though
South Africa has already won the series.
“We have to play well. We can’t relax because South Africa has a good
team and they are playing well. We know we are capable, and knew we
could do much better than the first game,” a determined Sri Lanka
It was a timely match-winning innings by Dilshan at a time his
captaincy has been widely criticised and seems to be in the balance.
Perhaps, Sunday’s game could well be his last game as captain as there
is speculation that the new selectors would explore the possibility of
bringing back veteran Mahela Jayewardene as captain.
Nevertheless, Dilshan has assured his place in the team after
“I am not listening to the news, anyone can write anything. I want to
finish this series because the selectors appointed me for the South
Africa tour. It’s up to them if I carry on. I am waiting for their call.
I’m still enjoying my captaincy,” he said after his majestic innings.
Despite being unable to led Sri Lanka to a single Test or ODI series
victory during his tenure since the World Cup, he said he had achieved
other goals for the country, such as blooding the next generation at
“The main thing is that I want to see youngsters performing for Sri
Lanka. I have done everything for my country. When they wanted me to
keep wicket, I did it. When they wanted me to bat at No. 1, I did it.
When they want me to bat at No. 6, I do it.
These are the last few years of my international career and I want to
finish strongly,” he added stating that in another few years after his
retirement, he could “sit back and watch those youngsters do these
things for Sri Lanka”.
He feels happy that Sri Lanka has been able to groom future prospects
such as Dinesh Chandimal and Thisara Perera during his tenure.
But South Africa is determined not to let Sri Lanka win again and win
the series 4-1. Captain A.B. de Villiers said South Africa put on a
barely believable and sometimes-comical fielding display, mixing
terrific catches like Alviro Petersen’s leap on the boundary to dismiss
Kumar Sangakkara with horrible gaffes such as Morne Morkel’s drop of
Angelo Mathews. “We weren’t great in the field today, We created a few
chances that we didn’t take,” he said.
“I needed to take a few chances because we needed wickets and I
thought the bowlers did really well on a good pitch.
But I made a few tactical errors and used the wrong bowlers at the
wrong time. But we are all out to win the final game and extend our
winning margin of the series to 4-1,” he said.
Sunday’s fifth ODI will be South Africa’s last home appearance of the
summer before they head to New Zealand and England.
De Villiers said they want end this series in as strong a position as
possible. “We spoke about ruthlessness before this game but we weren’t
We’ll have to do that better. We wanted a whitewash but we didn’t do
that. Now, we want to make it at least 4-1,” he concluded.
A. Petersen c Tharanga b Herath 37
G. Smith c Dilshan b Malinga 68
A.B. de Villiers b Perera 96
C. Ingram lbw b Kulasekara 01
J.P. Duminy c Sangakkara b Perera 36
F. du Plessis c Sangakkara b Herath 05
W. Parnell run out (Tharanga) 21
R. Peterson not out 23
V. Philander not out 02
Extras (b4, w6) 10
Total (7 wkts, 50 overs) 299
Did not bat: M. Morkel, L. Tsotsobe
Fall of wickets: 1-84 (Petersen), 2-171 (Smith)
3-172 (Ingram), 4-242 (Duminy)
5-250 (De Villiers), 6-252 (Du Plessis)
Bowling: Malinga 10-0-57-1 (4w)
Perera 4-0-34-2 (2w)
U. Tharanga c De Villiers b Tsotsobe 06
T. Dilshan c Duminy b Tsotsobe 87
K. Sangakkara c Petersen b Peterson 32
D. Chandimal b Tsotsobe 59
L. Thirimanne c Duminy b Philander 13
T. Perera not out 69
A. Mathews not out 21
Extras (b4, lb5, w6, nb2) 17
Total (5 wkts, 48.4 overs) 304
Did not bat: N. Kulasekara, L. Malinga, R. Herath, S. Senanayake
Fall of wickets: 1-17 (Tharanga), 2-100 (Sangakkara)
3-168 (Dilshan), 4-194 (Thirmanne)
Bowling: Morkel 8-0-43-0 (2w)
Tsotsobe 10-0-51-3 (1w)
Philander 6-0-39-1 (2w)
Parnell 9-0-52-0 (1nb)
Du Plessis 5-0-26-0 (1w)
Man of the match: Thisara Perera (SRI).
Series: South Africa lead five-match series 3-1.
Umpires: Johan Cloete (RSA) and Billy Doctrove (WIS)
TV umpire: Nigel Llong (ENG)
Match referee: Jeff Crowe (NZL)
Remaining match: Jan 22 - fifth ODI, Johannesburg (day).