Proteas prevail despite Tharanga heroics

2017-02-07 21:19
Upul Tharanga (Gallo)

Cape Town - The Proteas have won the fourth one day international against Sri Lanka at Newlands despite a superb innings of 119 by visiting captain Upul Tharanga.


Chasing a massive 368 to win, the visitors came out all guns blazing in their run chase. Tharanga led the way, piling into anything that the Proteas bowlers dished up to him.

Tharanga and Niroshan Dickwella put on 139 for the first wicket in just 16.1 overs before the latter top edged Dwaine Pretorius to square leg where Farhaan Behardien hung onto the catch.

Dickwella had scored a well played 58 off 47 balls.

Tharanga was joined at the crease by Kusal Mendis and the pair kept the run rate at around 7.5 runs per over during their partnership of 64 before Mendis gloved Wayne Parnell behind for 29. 

Tharanga, who earlier went to his century off just 73 balls, also fell to Parnell after guiding a rising delivery to JP Duminy at backward point.

His innings contributed 119 to the Sri Lankan cause off just 90 balls. 

The Sri Lankans were not done with Sandun Weerakkody (58) and Asela Gunaratne (38) keeping them within touching distance despite a required run rate that hovered around ten to the over.

It was a bridge too far however and after Gunaratne was caught at midwicket off Kagiso Rabada and Weerakkody fell to Imran Tahir soon after, the run rate got away from visitors with the Proteas eventually winning by 40 runs. 

Parnell was the pick of the Protea bowlers with 4/58 while Pretorius, Tahir and Rabada each claimed two wickets.


Earlier in the day, a batting masterclass by Faf du Plessis drove the Proteas innings.

Du Plessis (185 off 141 balls, 13x4, 3x6) came to the wicket after the loss of Hashim Amla (1) and together with Quinton de Kock (55) put on 100 for the second wicket before De Kock fell to Sachith Pathirana.

Proteas captain, AB de Villiers then joined Du Plessis and the two ensured the run rate never dipped below six runs per over. 

De Villiers was dismissed in the 37th over for a well played 64 after the pair had put on 137 for the third wicket.

During the course of the partnership, Du Plessis went to his ton off just 89 balls.

After De Villiers' dismissal, Du Plessis was joined by JP Duminy and the pair ensured there was no let off for the Sri Lankan bowlers, quickly putting on 47 with Duminy contributing a run-a-ball 20 before he was caught on the point boundary off Lahiru Kumara.

But this was Du Plessis day and he certainly didn't disappoint the Newlands crowd as he accelerated the scoring in the final ten overs of the innings.

By reaching 172, Du Plessis passed the highest one day international innings scored at Newlands. The previous record had belonged to Australia's David Warner.

He was eventually out in the final over of the innings, caught on the boundary while looking for a six that would take him past Gary Kirsten's 188, the highest individual one day international score by a South African.

Farhaan Behardien ended with a impressive 36 off just 20 balls. 

The series stands at 4-0 in the Proteas favour with the final match to be played at Centurion on Friday. 


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