South Africa 299-6, Sri Lanka 203 all out (41.3 overs)

South Africa win by 96 runs

I went to the Oval yesterday for the Champions Trophy game between South Africa and Sri Lanka. The tickets were a late birthday/Christmas present from my boyfriend Jon, and it was the first time we’d been to a whole international game together.

The atmosphere was great, lots of fans cheering for both sides and quite a few friends in the crowd to bump into. It was an exciting game, too, and until the last ten overs could have gone either way.

My top five moments in the game:

  • AB de Villiers’ catch of Kusal Mendis – he’s just so nonchalant and cool!
  • Amla’s near-run out, when he slid elegantly over the line like a dancer.
  • Chandimal’s “Superman” catch of Faf.
  • Dickwella hitting Rabada, one of the scariest bowlers in the world, for a six to bring up Sri Lanka’s fifty in less than 7 overs.
  • Tharanga’s run-out of Morris, throwing perfectly and fast with only one stump to aim at.

Two things that slightly marred the day, although in very different ways:

  • A group of drunk white South Africa fans in front of us throwing bananas onto the pitch. I’m fairly sure it was naïve high spirits rather than racism, and Faf, the only fielder nearby, cleared the skins away without fuss, but it left a bad taste in the mouth.
  • Listening to the national anthems at the start of the day reminded me that the last time I saw South Africa play was with Joanne (@lil_green_tpot), who died a fortnight ago. She would have loved to be there with me yesterday, or more likely listening to it on Guerilla Cricket from her home in Pretoria. It made me really miss her.