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South Africa elects to bat first against Sri Lanka in 1st test of 2-game series

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GALLE, Sri Lanka - South Africa captain Hashim Amla won the toss and elected to bat first against Sri Lanka in the first test of a two-match series.

South Africa, which can regain its top test ranking from Australia if it wins 2-0, played A.B. de Villiers as a specialist batsman due to a hamstring injury with Quinton de Kock to keep wickets

Sri Lanka fielded two spinners in Rangana Herath and Dilruwan Perera on a pitch expected to help slow bowling as the game progresses.

Amla became only the second non-white captain of South Africa after Ashwell Prince and the first to be appointed for the long run.

South Africa won a preceding three-game series 2-1 to record its first ever one-day series victory in Sri Lanka.

South Africa has not lost an away series since its last tour to Sri Lanka in 2006. In the same period, Sri Lanka has lost just one series at home.

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Lineups:

Sri Lanka: Upul Tharanga, Kaushal Silva, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Lahiru Thirimanne, Angelo Mathews (captain), Dinesh Chandimal, Rangana Herath, Dilruwan Perera, Suranga Lakmal, Shaminda Eranga.

South Africa: Alviro Petersen, Dean Elgar, Faf du Plessis, Hashim Amla (captain), AB de Villiers, Jean-Paul Duminy, Quinton de Kock, Vernon Philander, Morne Morkel, Dale Steyn, Imran Tahir.

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