On this day in 2014, Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn took 16 wickets between them to guide the Proteas to their first win in Sri Lanka in 14 years.
Coincidentally, it was on this day in 2000, 20 July, that Sri Lanka won their first Test against South Africa – a comprehensive innings victory in Galle. That drawn series was followed up with series wins in 2004 and 2006 by the Sri Lankans on their own turf, leaving the South Africans without a series win on the island since 1993.
Galle was the venue once more in 2014, as Hashim Amla made his captaincy bow for the green and gold, and it was indeed a superb piece of captaincy to lead them to victory in the first Test. The second Test was drawn, handing SA their first series victory in Sri Lanka for 21 years.
Spin king Muttiah Muralitharan was the destroyer-in-chief in 2000. Ironically it was a pair of pacemen to do the damage 14 years on. Centuries by Dean Elgar and JP Duminy got the tourists to 455-9 dec, before Steyn rocked the top order with a five-wicket haul, while Morkel cleaned up the tail with three wickets.
South Africa declared again, this time on 206-6, as Amla gave Sri Lanka 370 to track down in four sessions, making a victory for both sides a possibility. The Proteas, however, only required two sessions to skittle the Sri Lankans. Steyn took another four wickets to boast match figures of 9-99, and Morkel weighed in with four of his own, match figures of 7-78, to wrap up the 153-run victory.
Steyn took his wicket tally in Asia to 80, more than any other non-Asian bowler in Test history.
Photo: Associated Press