Heroics from all-rounder Seekuge Prasanna and Niroshan Dickwella saw Sri Lanka through to an emphatic win in the third and the final Twenty20 at Newlands, Cape Town last evening. Sri Lanka won by a margin of five wickets and a delivery to spare. The significant win led them to their maiden series win in South Africa.
The home team played with the world’s best batsman AB De Villers when Sri Lanka lost the element of experience with Mathews’ injury. Regardless of the youngsters, both teams were well balanced as two effective units in the limited over game.
Batting first, South Africa got off to a steady start but Sri Lanka kept things tight by taking the pace off the ball. With 3 sixes and 4 fours under his name, AB de Villiers made 63 off 44 deliveries before being dismissed by Kulasekara.
A wayward final over from Isuru Udana helped the hosts through to 169 in 20 overs.
In reply, Sri Lanka started well, credit to some attacking cricket from Upul Tharanga and Niroshan Dickwella who scored 68 off 51 deliveries. He thrashed the South African bowlers and played some attractive scoops in the middle overs. However, Imran Tahir’s excellent spell left Sri Lanka in trouble.
An excellent cameo towards the end from Seekuge Prasanna helped Sri Lanka to an unexpected win in the final over of the game.
“We could have won the series 3-0. It was in our hands in the first T20 but we lost it unfortunately. n the other two matches we were cool and calm, we held our nerve and we played well. That was the main reason we won the other two games. The first one was a ten-over match because of the rain but I think we could have won the series 3-0,” said Niroshan Dickwella after claiming his Man of the Match and Man of the series awards.
The 1st of the five one day internationals will commence on the 28th of January 2017.