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Didn't expect to win series 2-0 against Proteas, says Niroshan Dickwella


ANI Cricket
Sri Lanka sprung a huge upset as they defeated South Africa 2-0 in a two-match Test series in South Africa. The winning team's vice-captain Niroshan Dickwella himself admitted that they did not expect to clinch the series.
Dickwella gave the credit of the victory to the entire team and a said that winning the series is a "pretty big" thing for them.
"It's a pretty big thing for this. We never expected to win the series 2-0, but the guys played really well and the result is a testament to that," ESPN Cricinfo quoted Niroshan Dickwella as saying.
The hero for Sri Lanka was Kushal Perera who played an unbeaten knock of 153 runs taking them to a thrilling win in the first Test match and setting the tone for the rest of the series.
Dickwella said that he along with the captain Dimuth Karunaratne wanted the guys to express themselves and play freely.
"When I became the vice-captain, I had a chat with Dimuth and I had a chat with the support group telling the guys to express themselves. We told them to keep the other stuff outside then they can free their mind and perform fully to their potential," he revealed.
Dickwella was applauded for his wicket-keeping skills as well in the series against South Africa. The keeper managed to take a total of nine catches in the series.
"As a wicket-keeper in these conditions, one needs to be on his toes always. We just wanted the bowlers to bowl on probing areas and let the ball do the talking," he said.
Sri Lanka have had a series of poor losses against Australia and New Zealand but the vice-captain believes that those defeats gave them the chance to get familiar with the bouncy tracks.
"I think we would have performed well in New Zealand if he had played Australia first. Coming from back to back series against Australia and New Zealand, it gave us a chance to get familiarised with bouncy conditions that is why we performed so well against South Africa."
After clinching the Test series, Sri Lanka became the first Asian team to win a Test series against South Africa on their home soil.
Next, Sri Lanka and South Africa will take on each other in a five-match ODI series which is slated to be held from March 3 to 16.

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First Published: Feb 26 2019 | 5:15 PM IST

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