COLOMBO, Sri Lanka: Sri Lanka set South Africa a daunting 369 to win the second test after declaring its second innings on 229-8 late on the fourth day Sunday.
Kumar Sangakkara (72) and captain Angelo Mathews (63) made hasty half-centuries to increase Sri Lanka's lead and give them hope of levelling the two-match test series on a turning Sinhalese Sports Club pitch.
Sangakkara took 90 balls and hit three boundaries while sharing 81 runs for the fourth wicket with Mathews, who remained unbeaten on 63. Mathews faced 83 deliveries and hit two sixes and two boundaries.
Fast bowler Morne Morkel returned 4-45 while Dale Steyn and Imran Tahir picked up two wickets each. Sri Lanka made 421 in the first innings and dismissed South Africa for 282.
Kumar Sangakkara hit a hasty 72 to put Sri Lanka firmly in control of the second cricket test against South Africa with a massive 342-run second innings lead on Sunday.
Sri Lanka reached 203-6 to cushion an already handy 139-run first innings lead when bad light stopped play and tea was taken on the fourth day. Sangakkara took 90 balls and hit three boundaries in his innings. He shared 81 runs for the fourth wicket with captain Angelo Mathews who remained unbeaten on 48.
Fast bowler Morne Morkel took three wickets for 38 and reached 200-wicket mark in tests while Dale Steyn recorded 2-49. Sri Lanka reached 108-3 but heavy rain during the interval caused a 30-minute delay in starting the second session. Resuming under cloudy conditions, Sangakkara and Mathews showed urgency in scoring taking quick singles and twos.
Sangakkara was dismissed trying to charge Morkel and was caught behind by Quinton de Kock. Both Kithruwan Vithanage (7) and Niroshan Dickwella (16) fell going for big shots.
Resuming day four on 11-0 with a 150-run lead, the hosts lost three wickets in the morning session while adding 97 runs. Upul Tharanga was out for 30, caught behind off Steyn, while Kaushal Silva was dismissed for 26 after spooning a catch to Vernon Philander off Morkel. Mahela Jayawardene, who top scored for Sri Lanka in the first innings with 165, was out without scoring.
Jayawardene attempted to sweep leg spinner Imran Tahir and was caught brilliantly by Dean Elgar who dived across the pitch from silly-mid-on. He reviewed the decision given by English umpire Nigel Llong unsuccessfully even though television replays were inconclusive as to whether the ball had touched the glove.
Sri Lanka made 421 in the first innings and dismissed South Africa for 282. South Africa captain Hashim Amla was unbeaten on 139 for South Africa while Sri Lankan off spinner Dilruwan Perera returned his best test bowling figures of 5-69.