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  • South Africa V Sri Lanka

South Africa vs Sri Lanka

Match info: One Day International Series 4th Match at Kimberley - Fourth Match

Date: 20th Jan 2012 Umpires: J D Cloete and B R Doctrove

50-over match

Home team and score Away team score

South Africa

299/7 (50.0 Overs)

Result

Sri Lanka

304/5 (48.4 Overs)

Sri Lanka won by 5 wickets.

  • Last Updated: January 22 2012, 18:15 GMT

Kumar Sangakkara's century led Sri Lanka to a riveting two-wicket win over South Africa with a ball to spare as they restored some pride in the fifth and final one-day international.

Kumar Sangakkara: Guided his side to victory
Kumar Sangakkara: Guided his side to victory

At 3-1 down, Sri Lanka appeared poised for another defeat when centuries from Graeme Smith (125) and AB de Villiers (125 not out), who added 186 in 28 overs for for the third wicket, led the Proteas to 312 for four.

But Sangakkara (102) and Lahiru Thirimanne (69) put on 100 together and, when both fell late on, Sachithra Senanayake smashed a six to seal a breathless win.

Sri Lanka, who are reportedly set to replace coach Geoff Marsh with Graham Ford, got their chase off to a positive start with Upul Tharanga, rather than Tillakaratne Dilshan, the aggressor.

He was unbeaten on 34 out of Sri Lanka's 57 without loss when rain came in the eighth over.

No overs were lost despite a break of around an hour, and Tharanga (46) continued where he left off, claiming three more boundaries before perishing going for a fourth which would have taken him to 50.

He was unlucky though as his sliced drive went over JP Duminy, who turned and ran towards the boundary before diving forward to take a sensational catch as the ball dropped over his shoulder.

Dilshan (41) and Dinesh Chandimal fell in similar fashion, edging behind while attempting to cut rising deliveries from Lonwabo Tsotsobe and Wayne Parnell respectively, leaving them 175 for three after 30 overs.

Thirimanne and Sangakkara worked the ball around to good effect, putting on 100 with a minimum of fuss.

Sangakkara brought up his own century off 96 balls by glancing Albie Morkel for four but holed out to Duminy two deliveries later.

Thirimanne reached his first ODI half-century moments later but Angelo Mathews, Thisara Perera and Nuwan Kulasekara came and went without offering support as the game turned in South Africa's favour.

When Thirimanne fell off the third ball of the last over, Robin Peterson's second wicket in three deliveries, it seemed to be all over, but Senanayake heaved a huge six off the penultimate ball - his first runs in ODIs - to provide a final twist.

It was tough on De Villiers and, in particular, Smith, who hit his first ton since September 2009 to ease the pressure after some had been calling for him to be dropped.

After Alviro Petersen and Francois du Plessis fell cheaply, the pair were content to accumulate steadily until De Villiers hit Dilshan for six to signal a change of approach and raced to 50 off 47 balls.

De Villiers took the total past 200 and Smith nudged his way to 100, much to the delight of the crowd.

Having played the anchor role in reaching his century off 129 balls, Smith then freed his arms to take two maximums off one Senanayake over.

Smith picked out the leaping Chandimal at mid-wicket off the returning Lasith Malinga, but De Villiers passed 100 with a huge six then manufactured a couple more to take his side past 300.