oh, oh no, I love it!
What a game! What a day! We had sun, rain, cricket, beer, boerewors rolls and a great crowd. What more could one desire (except for a win)?
I had the bittersweet privilege of watching South Africa’s last ODI match against Sri Lanka at the Wanderers on the 22nd of January. The Bullring was packed to the rafters with supporters, most of them clad in the green and gold colours of the Proteas. We were in for an amazing spectacle with the advantage shifting throughout the game. South Africa batted superbly, with big Biffy scoring a well-deserved century and captain AB also coming to the party with a flamboyant, blazing volley of runs.
Sri Lanka blistered past the run rate required and cruised to a comfortable lead. Rain dampened South African hearts even further and everyone thought that Duckworth might show his face again. But luckily, he and Lewis stayed away and did not join the party – nobody likes a D/L result in cricket, especially those in the crowd who stays until the end of it all.
The stands held fewer people when play resumed and it could be understood why; Sri Lanka was smacking fours and giving our fielders leisurely jogs to the boundary. Sangakarra beat our bowlers to a pulp and it seemed that we were heading for an early close… Until JP Duminy of all people in South African cricket history took a wicket. I do not completely agree with letting a part-time bowler actually BOWL, but Kirsten must have his experimental reasons…
And so it came to pass that Sri Lanka needed 5 runs from 2 deliveries. Just when a sliver of hope, a little ray of Peterson sunshine entered our dark arena, it was unceremoniously and nonchalantly smacked for six.
It was a great match in the end (especially the first half) and was quite enjoyable. Hats off to the Sri Lankans and their never-say-die attitude!