His career-best helps South Africa restrict the hosts to 277 for nine

Left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj claimed career-best figures of eight for 116 as South Africa restricted Sri Lanka to 277 for nine at stumps on the opening day of the second Test match at the Sinhalese Sports Club on Friday.

Maharaj’s figures are the third best against Sri Lanka by any opposition bowler following Imran Khan’s eight for 58 in Lahore and Shannon Gabriel’s eight for 62 in St. Lucia last month.

After a promising start where the openers put on 116 runs for the first wicket, Sri Lanka collapsed as Maharaj bowled a probing line.

Maharaj bowled unchanged in the afternoon session and picked up the openers Dimuth Karunaratne (53) and Danushka Gunathilaka (57) in successive overs. He also accounted for Kusal Mendis to reduce Sri Lanka to 168 for three by tea.

In the final session, Maharaj picked up five wickets to put South Africa on top. Kagiso Rabada claimed the other wicket to fall when he cleaned up Roshen Silva for 22.

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