SA in Sri Lanka

Woeful weekend for SA sport

2013-07-28 22:26
Tillakaratne Dilshan (AP Photo)
Pallekele - A crushing series defeat of the Proteas at the hands of Sri Lanka has capped off a weekend of misery for South African sport, as the hosts took an unassailable 3-1 lead in the series.

South Africa conceded 20 extras, including 17 wides and a no-ball. In truth, Sri Lanka were rarely tested as they eased comfortably to an eight-wicket victory, making Wednesday's fifth and final match in Colombo effectively a dead-rubber.

A day earlier, the Bulls became the last South African team to be knocked out of the 2013 Super Rugby competition, when they lost 26-23 to the Brumbies in the dying seconds of the semi-final, to make the final an all-Antipodean affair.

The end of the game at Loftus Versfeld descended into a comedy of errors with tactical miscalculations, a raft of poorly considered substitutions, and a lack of composure from some of South African rugby's most experienced players.

Bulls and Springbok flyhalf legend Naas Botha and former Springbok coach Nick Mallett were brutally honest in their frank assessment of the game.

Former Bok coach Nick Mallett described the spurning of the kicks as “strangely un-Bulls-like”, and Botha was just as critical.

“Morné should have taken [the initiative] himself and gone up and said ‘look, I’m kicking the points, and then let’s start again’.

“I also wouldn’t have taken off Chiliboy [Ralepelle] and Jacques Potgieter [during the final quarter].”

The Bulls captain Dewald Potgieter opted to go for the lineout rather than going for the points on three occasions, before the Bulls managed to botch their own lineout several times.

The Proteas will now be eyeing victory in the T20 series kicking off on Friday the 2nd of August as an opportunity to avenge their series loss, whilst rugby fans will have to wait for the Springboks' Rugby Championship opener against Argentina on Saturday the 17th of August to see a South African team featuring in an international rugby competition again. 


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