Amla ton guides South Africa to 299-6 in Champions Trophy

There might be a time in the tournament where we might use a different strategy, if we play against a certain opposition or on a certain field. The same over saw leg-spinner Tahir removing Chamara Kapugedera (0) with a lbw decision.

The sub-continent side definitely benefited from having former Proteas bowling coach Allan Donald in their camp, for they were a far more disciplined unit than the wayward bunch that were in South Africa only a few months ago. South Africa's batting did not really fire here, but the bowling looked to have incision, with Tahir an old hand in England and the pace attack reliably stocked. "Today I felt we played some loose shots". Morkel was given just one outing‚ and that despite not featuring in a match for SA in the format for more than a year because of a back injury.

Chasing 300 for a win, Sri Lanka made a brisk start with Niroshan Dickwella (41) and Upul Tharanga (57) stitching 69 runs for the opening wicket.

Tharanga proceeded to score 57 off 69 balls, which included six boundaries, before he was removed by Tahir.

In all it has four batsmen and two bowlers in the respective top 10 ICC rankings, while seventh-placed Sri Lanka has none in either list.

It was Pradeep once again, who provided the breakthrough for South Africa when he had du Plessis caught at deep midwicket and in the next over Seekkuge Prasanna (1-72) accounted for AB de Villiers (4).

Sri Lanka completed their 50 overs more than half an hour behind schedule during the 96-run defeat by the South Africans at The Oval.

The opportunity fell to Lasith Malinga, making his first ODI appearance in nearly two years, but he lost his footing as he trod on the boundary rope before spilling the ball as he dived forward. "We have to come back strongly against India, especially with our batting".

Sri Lanka has struggled of late, and not just against South Africa.

Sri Lanka got off to a solid start reaching 82 for one at the end of the tenth over, but failed to capitalize.

Tharanga has been suspended for two matches due to his team's slow over rate. But elsewhere there was a feeling that Sri Lanka took a backward step in their selection for this match.

The Proteas won by 96 runs after they notched up 299 for six and then bowled out the opposition for 203.

Sri Lanka were also missing their captain and key player Angelo Matthews who is expected to return for the next game, his return will provide the Lankan lions with some much needed stability and experience in the middle-order. "Not that the allrounders can't take wickets but I'll probably be leaning towards getting your best bowlers in to make sure we have our best chance to bowl them out and to get 10 wickets in the game".

  • Julie Sanders