Former champions Sri Lanka are all but out of the ongoing World Cup after suffering a nine-wicket drubbing against a clinical South Africa on Friday. Sent in to bat, Sri Lanka produced a dismal batting show to manage a modest 203, a target which the Proteas overhauled with 76 balls in hand.
the Proteas picked up wickets at regular intervals after the first 10 overs, never allowing the Sri Lankan middle-order settle down. Drafted into the playing eleven in place of Lungi Ngidi, pacer Dwaine Pretorius (3/25) justified his selection with a three-wicket haul.
Chris Morris (3/46) and Kagiso Rabada (2/36) shared five wickets between them. Sri Lanka had a horrible start as they lost skipper Dimuth Karunaratne in the first ball of the match, caught by his counterpart Du Plessis at the second slip off Rabada.
Chasing the modest target, South Africa lost Quinton de Kock (15) at the score of 31 in the fifth over but thereafter Hashim Amla and skipper Faf du Plessis held the fort and stitched an unbeaten 175-run stand to guide the Proteas home comfortably.
While Du Plessis remained unbeaten on 96 off 103 balls, hitting 10 boundaries and one six, Amla finished on 80 not out off 105 balls with the help of five fours. The win, however, came as a welcome relief for South Africa, who have endured a nightmarish World Cup campaign.