Sri Lanka clinched the first-ever series victory for an Asian team in South Africa after sweeping the Proteas 2-0 with an eight-wicket win in the second test on Saturday.
Sri Lanka’s stunning success came against all expectations after arriving for the two-test series with a new captain and a patched-up team following a run of poor form.
Yet the Sri Lankans cruised to victory in Port Elizabeth early on Day 3 of the second match against test cricket’s No. 2-ranked team, reaching the victory target of 197 for the loss of just two wickets.
Kusal Mendis and Oshada Fernando dominated South Africa’s famed fast-bowling attack to seal the victory, with Mendis finishing on 84 not out and Fernando, in his debut series, 75 not out.
Sri Lanka is only the third team after England and Australia to win a series in South Africa and is the first to blank the Proteas at home since Ricky Ponting’s Australia won 3-0 in South Africa in 2006. Before Saturday, that was the only time South Africa had been swept at home since its return to international cricket after the end of apartheid.
South Africa last lost at home three years ago and had won seven straight series at home.