Hambantota, Sri Lanka, Aug 7: Tillakaratne Dilshan hit an unbeaten 74 off 51 deliveries to take Sri Lanka to a six-wicket consolation win in the third and final Twenty20 match over South Africa, which won the series 2-1.
South Africa captain Faf du Plessis led from the front scoring 85 in his team's imposing 163 for three in 20 overs after electing to bat first at Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium. Jean-Paul Duminy continued his top form with a run-a-ball unbeaten 51.
Sri Lanka took off to a strong start as Dilshan and Mahela Jayawardene added 67 runs before Jayawardene (33) was out in the sixth over.
The start and 20 runs in the 18th over by Thisara Perera enabled Sri Lanka to chase down the score with 11 deliveries to spare.
“Obviously we are disappointed with tonight. I thought we were not as good in our execution as in the previous games and in the field today,” du Plessis said. “All in all really, really happy to come and beat the best team in their own country.”
Sri Lanka captain Dinesh Chandimal praised his batsmen for their good performance after failing in the first two matches.
Dilshan, who was named man of the match, hit two sixes and nine boundaries while Jayawardene's runs came off 16 deliveries including seven boundaries.
Perera hit a six and three boundaries for an 11-ball 25 not out.
Medium pace bowler David Wieser returned 2-24 for South Africa.
Earlier, du Plessis hit three sixes and 10 boundaries for a career-best 85 off 65 deliveries to lift South Africa to a strong total.
Du Plessis went in to bat at No. 3 after losing his opener Henry Davids with no score on the board.
Duminy hit two sixes and three boundaries and was man of the series for scoring 132 runs in three matches with an average of 66.
He also picked up three wickets.
Sri Lanka won the one-day international series 4-1.