Steyn charges Proteas to 153-run victory against Lanka in first Test
Colombo: South African pace bowler Dale Steyn guided his side to a 153-run win over Sri Lanka as the first Test of the two-match series concluded on Sunday at Colombo.
Steyn along with fast bowler Morne Morkel bowled the visitors to their third Test win in Sri Lanka with 16 wickets in Galle, including seven on the final day.
Steyn gave figures of 9-99 in the first Test that included 5-54 in the first innings and 4-45 in the second.
Sri Lanka wicketkeeper batsman Kumar Sangakkara proved to be the biggest obstacle in the visitors` path, but gave away his wicket to JP Duminy on 76 runs.
Sri Lanka began the final day on 110 for 1, 260 runs adrift of the target of 370.
South Africa captain Hashim Amla used his fast bowlers in short spells and Steyn and Morkel gave way to spinner Imran Tahir and fast-medium bowler Vernon Philander. However, neither Tahir nor Philander carried the threat that the pace bowlers did.
Sri Lanka had lost 5 for 40 in 18.2 overs, and skipper Angelo Mathews had been left alone on the rapidly fading batting line up. Mathews struggled with the bat to guide the hosts to victory but failed as Morkel ended the match with two wickets in two balls.
Steyn, who is the man of the match for figures of 9-99, said that it is never easy, but someone needs to do the hard yards for the team, adding that the captain counted onhim and he was happy to do well.
South African skipper Amla said that Test cricket is not easy at all, adding that he credits his squad for the victory as they had a challenging first 30 overs. He said that he never doubted about the timing of his declaration.
Amla said that he thought 370 was enough and wanted to give enough time for our bowlers, adding that he feels that his side batted very well after winning the toss and getting to 455 was vital.
Sri Lankan captain Mathews said that South Africa outplayed them on all five days, adding that the visitors played good cricket, that`s why they are number two in the rankings.
Mathews said that he does not mind losing, but it was disappointing the way Sri Lanka lost.