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Tuesday, Mar 31st

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Proteas T20 captain, JP Duminy, says some key individual players taking part in the One-Day International (ODI) series starting on Friday will take confidence from their performances in this series, while the new caps will take a lot of learning back to South Africa.

“Someone like Rilee (Rossouw) would have taken a lot out of this series,” Duminy said after the match. “In the one-day format he hasn’t really taken opportunities to score big runs as yet, he will take a lot out of it.

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The South Africans took a handsome 1-0 series lead as they gave the Sri Lankans a 75-run hammering in the first ODI in Colombo. After setting the hosts a target of 305 courtesy a fine hundred from Hashim Amla, the Proteas countered a threatening knock from Kumar Sangakkara to bundle the Sri Lankans out for just 229.

Young Quinton De Kock walked out to bat with the Hashim Amla after skipper AB De Villiers won the toss and elected to bat first. The duo gave their side a good start adding 58 for the first wicket inside 13 overs before the Lankans put a brake on their charge as De Kock chopped one onto his stumps following which Jacques Kallis, who had question marks over his fitness before this game, walked rather quickly back to the pavilion for a 17TH ODI duck.

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Quinton de Kock and Hashim Amla shared a record-breaking day to set up the Proteas for another massive victory by 134 runs over India in the second Momentum ODI at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead and a series triumph with a match to spare.

De Kock completed back-to-back ODI centuries to match the performances of Amla and Herschelle Gibbs while Amla notched up his 12th ODI century and in the process became the quickest batsman to score 4 000 ODI runs, doing so in four matches and seven innings faster than the legendary Sir Vivian Richards.

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Quinton de Kock continued his recent run of outstanding form to be named man of the match as South Africa beat Pakistan by four runs on the D/L method in the first KFC T20 International match at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium on Wednesday evening. De Kock set up the Proteas victory in a dynamic opening partnership of 72 off 49 balls with Hashim Amla after Pakistan had won the toss and opted to field first. De Kock contributed 43 off 33 balls (8 fours) while Amla made 31 off 20 balls (6 fours).

While the pair were at the crease a Proteas total in excess of 200 was well on the cards but, once they were dismissed, the Pakistan spinners grabbed control and in the end the Proteas had to scramble their way to 153/7 in their 20 overs. Both Mohammed Hafeez (2/25) and Shahid Afridi (1/14) were outstanding in their respective spells of four overs as the Proteas innings almost ground to a halt between the 12th and 17th overs.

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AB de Villiers hit a defiant half-century but there was little other cheer for the South Africa as they suffered their second defeat by more than 100 runs in the ODI series against Sri Lanka at Colombo on Wednesday. Sri Lanka won the final match by a substantial 128 runs to finish dominant 4-1 winners of the five-match series. Both teams will now turn their attention to the three-match T20 International series starting on Friday.

Sri Lanka always controlled the game after winning the toss and putting 307 runs on the board for the loss of only four wickets after their two in-form veterans, Tillakaratne Dilshan (99 off 110 balls, 13 fours) and Kumar Sangakkara (75 not out off 45 balls, 12 fours), had again confirmed themselves not only as the best but more importantly the most consistent batsmen on either side.

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Dale Steyn took a critical catch off what turned out to be the last ball of the match to earn the Proteas a tie against the West Indies under the Duckworth-Lewis method at Cardiff on Friday and by virtue of their better net run rate in the tournament thus far, a place in the semi-finals of the ICC Champions Trophy.

Rain delayed the start of play which saw the match reduced to 31 overs per side. The West Indies, chasing a target of 231 for victory, had reached 190/5 at the end of 26 overs which had them ahead on the Duckworth/Lewis method at that stage. Kieron Pollard was, however, caught at third man by Steyn off the first ball of the next over bowled by Ryan McLaren to leave the teams tied. No further play was possible and the tied result meant that the Proteas qualified for the semi-final ahead of the West Indies on their superior run rate. At that stage the West Indies still needed 41 for victory with their last two reliable batsmen together at the crease.

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The Proteas regained control of their destiny at the ICC Champions Trophy Tournament when they beat Pakistan by 67 runs with five overs to spare in their second Group B match at Edgbaston on Monday.

The result moves the Proteas back into a positive run rate and they join India and West Indies on two points with Pakistan yet to get off the mark. The Proteas are currently in third place but they are almost certain to go second after tomorrow’s other second round Group B match between India and the West Indies at The Oval.

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