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8-wicket win for Sri Lanka over South Africa


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PORT ELIZABETH – Oshada Fernando and Kusal Mendis struck unbeaten half-centuries as Sri Lanka claimed a historic eight-wicket win in the second and final Test at St George’s Park yesterday to become the first Asian side to win a Test series in South Africa.

Prior to the series, Sri Lanka had not won a game in any format since October but comfortably chased down a victory target of 197 on the third day for a 2-0 triumph.

Sri Lanka claimed a thrilling first Test victory in Durban by one wicket and outplayed South Africa in the second, setting up their victory by skittling out the hosts for 128 in their second innings on Friday.

Mendis scored 84 and Fernando made 75, putting on an unbroken stand of 163 for the third wicket as they pummelled the muchvaunted South African bowling attack on a wicket that became easier to bat on through the Test.

“It’s a great feeling for me and the team. It’s not easy when you come to South Africa, so to win the series 2-0 is brilliant,” Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne said at the post-match presentation.

“It has been a lot of hard work, but the guys did really well and enjoyed it a lot, which is why I think we created history.

“This victory is dedicated to the Sri Lanka fans who have continued to support us because they were always behind us when we were losing.

“We wanted to do something here for them.” (Reuters)