Sri Lanka beat South Africa by 278 runs in 1st Test

All out for 73! Proteas crumble in Sri Lanka

All out for 73! Proteas crumble in Sri Lanka

The South Africans lost all 10 wickets in the second session to lose the first Test by 278 runs as they were bowled out for 73 - their lowest score since readmission in 1992.

Captain Faf du Plessis acknowledged their batting lineup was no match for the Sri Lanka spin attack and said they needed to improvise against the hosts to level the series.

Du Plessis said South Africa would have to consider playing an extra specialist batsman in the second Test after being exposed in Galle.

Only three of the visitors made it into double figures, and the highest partnership yielded just 22, as batsmen repeatedly fell in their attempts to take on the Sri Lanka spinners. "But I think there's good lessons for us to learn", he said.

Veteran left-arm spinner Rangana Herath picked up three wickets in the second innings.

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Kagiso Rabada had struck twice in an over in the first hour of the day, before spinners Maharaj, Tabraiz Shamsi, and Dale Steyn took one wicket apiece to finish the innings off.

"If you keep losing wickets, it is tough coming in". "It was a fantastic batting effort from Karunaratne", said du Plessis. Barring a brief period of resistance from du Plessis in the first innings, South Africa failed to forge any partnership of substance through the two innings.

The skipper opined that a lack of ruthlessness with the ball in the first innings had a domino effect that left the Proteas chasing the game having initially reduced Sri Lanka to 170 for 7.

Du Plessis was asked whether it was South Africa's worst defeat under his leadership. "We know the Sri Lankan spinners are very, very good, especially in their own conditions". "I think even in South Africa you'll still prepare the conditions the way you prepare them now, but you just make sure that you bring some balance".

The second test starts Friday in Colombo.

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