Vernon Philander claimed his second five-wicket haul of the match as South Africa stormed to victory by an innings and 81 runs before tea on the third day of their first Test against Sri Lanka at SuperSport Park yesterday.
Sri Lanka crashed to 150 all out in their second innings, with Philander taking five for 49 after taking five for 53 in the first innings. Wicketkeeper Mark Boucher took six catches to equal the South Africa record for the fourth time.
Sri Lanka could not cope with South Africa’s pace attack on a pitch of uneven bounce and extravagant seam movement.
They lost their first six wickets for 70 runs and only some desperation hitting by their tailenders enabled them to reach their eventual total.
Sri Lanka were 38 for four at lunch.
Fast bowling discovery Philander took two wickets and Dale Steyn one before Sri Lanka lost Mahela Jayawardene to a needless run-out when he was a run short of becoming the first Sri Lanka player to score 10,000 Test runs.
Philander made the first breakthrough when he had Sri Lanka captain Tillekeratne Dilshan caught behind by Mark Boucher for 6 in the fourth over, with Dilshan forced to play a ball close to his off-stump which moved away off a pitch which has helped the fast bowlers throughout the match.
Tharanga Paranavitana was caught behind for 4 off Dale Steyn in the fifth over and Kumar Sangakkara followed two overs later when he edged a superb delivery from Philander to Boucher, the ball swinging in to the left-hander and then nipping away off the pitch.
Paranavitana survived two television reviews and was struck on the knee and right elbow during his brief innings.
Steyn, on a hat-trick after finishing off Sri Lanka’s first innings, appealed for LBW when he beat Paranavitana with the first ball of the innings. Umpire Rod Tucker gave the batsman not out and his decision was shown to be correct when South Africa asked for a review, with the ball missing the left-hander’s leg stump.
Paranavitana was then given out LBW to Philander by umpire Steve Davis and successfully sought a review which showed the ball pitched outside leg stump.
Jayawardene, needing 16 to reach 10 000 Test runs, took his score to 15 with two boundaries in an over off Jacques Kallis.
He then pushed a ball from Kallis to the off-side and was called through for a run by batting partner Thilan Samaraweera. Kallis reacted quickly, picked up the ball, turned and threw down the stumps at the bowler’s end with Jayawardene well short.
Samaraweera made a plucky 32 before he was caught behind off Morne Morkel, which effectively ended the tourists’ resistance, although Thisera Perera and Rangana Herath hit sixes before Philander claimed the final wicket when Herath was caught behind.
South Africa were bowled out earlier for 411, with last wicket pair Mark Boucher and Imran Tahir adding 22 runs in four overs to extend their last wicket stand to 61, a record against Sri Lanka.
Boucher added four boundaries to his overnight 49 before chasing a wide ball from Chanaka Welegedera to be caught behind by Kaushal Silva for 65. Tahir was unbeaten on 29.