COLOMBO - Hashim Amla faced a stern test of character in his first series as captain after South Africa lost three key wickets against a determined Sri Lankan bowling attack in the second Test yesterday.
Amla, 31, dug in with a painstaking 46 off 134 balls as South Africa trailed the hosts by 323 runs with seven wickets in hand on the second day of the Test at the SSC ground in Colombo.
At stumps, South Africa were 3-98 with AB de Villiers being the other not out batsman at the crease on 11.
Amla is leading the South African team for the first time in this two-Test series after being named captain last month following the retirement of Graeme Smith.
With the wicket showing signs of deteriorating, Amla and his men now face an uphill task to put up a fighting total on the board.
Sri Lanka posted 421 in their first innings, thanks to a solid 165-run knock by Mahela Jayawardene and a defiant 72 by Test debutant Niroshan Dickwella.