World Cup 2019, South Africa vs Sri Lanka, 2nd Warm-up match, Review – Faf leads from the front as Proteas begin with a bang

Phehlukwayo and Dwaine Pretorius bowled brilliantly in the death to contain their opposition to 251 runs in 42.3 overs.


Faf du Plessis, South Africa, World Cup
Faf du Plessis. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

South Africa missed out narrowly in the previous World Cup in the semi-finals, and they seem determined to complete the task this time around in England. In their quest for a maiden world title, they defeated Sri Lanka by 87 runs in their first assignment in the English lands in the first warm-up game in Cardiff.

The Saffers were put into bat first after Sri Lankan skipper won the toss. It didn’t prove to be a great decision from Dimuth Karunaratne as Aiden Markram and Hashim Amla began the hunt with a fiery start. The duo added 47 runs in no time before Markram departed courtesy some brilliant bowling from Suranga Lakmal.


Hashim Amla has been under the pump for so long and a good knock was all he needed to break the shackles. He played some wonderful cover-drives and looked positive, much to the delight of their fans. On the other end was skipper Faf du Plessis, who just can’t stop scoring runs at this point in time. The duo hammered away runs for fun and toyed with the Lankan bowling attack.

These middle-overs extracted a lot of runs for the South Africans and Amla in the process completed a half-century. Faf too got to his own in the 21st over and kept striking the ball beautifully. Amla fell for a 61-ball 65 and that brought curtains to a 128-run partnership between him and the skipper. Du Plessis followed suit and was dismissed the very next over, which saw South Africa lose their way a little.

Van der Dussen, JP Duminy and Andile Phehlukwayo chipped in with some cameos and helped South Africa get to 337 in their 50 overs, but they clearly were 20 runs short having gotten such a blazing start. Lakmal was the pick of the bowlers for Sri Lanka, who picked two wickets and gave away 63 runs in his 9 overs.

Karunaratne holds the fort briefly but Proteas sail along

Kusal Perera and Lahiru Thirimanne fell very early for the Lankan Lions, reducing them to 10/2 in no time. Kusal Mendis and skipper Dimuth Karunaratne chipped in with a crucial partnership at this point, which emphasized more on damage control rather than keeping up with the required rate. They added 62 runs for the 3rd wicket before Mendis was dismissed for a 31-ball 37.

Karunaratne continued to build on his good start and stitched another fantastic stand with Angelo Mathews. These two senior players kept plugging in the odd boundary and lifted the Lankan spirits briefly. Skipper completed his fifty and their partnership ensured the required rate didn’t go out of control completely.

After adding 98 for the fourth wicket, Karunaratne departed just 13 short of a hundred and from then on, it was the usual story for the Islanders. A good start here and there, but no promise in the middle order saw Mathews fight a lone battle. He got to his half-century, but that didn’t reap anything significant for his side

Phehlukwayo and Dwaine Pretorius bowled brilliantly in the death to contain their opposition to 251 runs in 42.3 overs. Phehlukwayo registered figures of 4/36 whilst the Lungi Ngidi picked up a brace. South Africa will next face Windies in their second and final warm-up game.

Brief Scores

South Africa: 338/7 in 50 overs (Hashim Amla 65, Faf du Plessis 88; Suranga Lakmal 2/63)

Pakistan: 251 all out in 42.3 overs (Dimuth Karunaratne 87, Angelo Mathews 64; Andile Phehlukwayo 4/36)

Result: South Africa won by 87 runs