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Philander Steyn sink Sri Lanka

South African opening bowler Vernon Philander claimed his third five-wicket haul in as many Test matches as Sri Lanka were bowled out for 180 on the first day of the first Test at SuperSport Park yesterday.


Dale Steyn claimed four wickets yesterday. Pic/AFP

Philander took five for 53 and fellow fast bowler Dale Steyn grabbed four for 18 to end the Sri Lankan innings shortly before the scheduled tea break.

Sri Lanka, who were sent in on a green pitch which offered bounce and movement to the South African fast bowlers, lost their last six wickets for 24 runs off 32 balls.

The collapse was sparked by a burst of three wickets in five balls -- all confirmed by television reviews -- which ended a spirited fifth wicket stand of 65 off 79 balls between Thilan Samaraweera (36) and Angelo Mathews (38).

Philander broke the partnership when he had Samaraweera caught behind off a ball which bounced steeply. The batsman was given not out by umpire Rod Tucker but the South Africans asked for a review and the hotspot technology showed that the batsman got a faint edge to the ball.

The next ball brought the wicket of Kaushal Silva, again after the batsman was given not out by umpire Tucker. The review requested by South Africa showed that Silva gloved the ball down the legside to wicketkeeper Mark Boucher. Three balls later, new batsman Thisara Perera was caught at slip off leg-spinner Imran Tahir.

Philander, who took five wickets in an innings in both his previous Tests against Australia, had Mathews caught at slip to achieve the feat again before Steyn bowled Chanaka Welegedara and Dilhara Fernando with successive balls.

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