Kumar Sangakkara hit a blistering 169 as Sri Lanka convincingly beat South Africa by 180 runs in the first one-day international in Colombo.
It was the wicketkeeper’s highest ODI score and he rounded off the victory by stumping South Africa last man Aaron Phangiso as the visitors were dismissed for 140.
Sri Lanka were 23 for one when Sangakkara entered the fray after Chris Morris had bowled Tillakaratne Dilshan for 10 but, by the time he departed in the penultimate over, he had taken his side’s score past 300 and recorded his 16th ODI century.
He got off to a steady start, with his half-century coming in 67 balls, and with 12 overs left of his side’s innings he was sitting on 66. But in the 39th over the shackles came off, with the 35-year-old hitting Morris for three fours and a six in the space of four balls.
Three further boundaries in the next two overs brought up a 104-ball ton and he continued to punish the South African attack, passing 150 for the first time in his limited-overs career just 23 balls later.
His entertaining innings finally came to an end as he was caught at long-on in the 49th over off Phangiso, although he had put his side in a dominant position.
South Africa’s chase of 320 got off to the worst possible start as Colin Ingram - opening for the injured Hashim Amla - was beaten first ball by an inswinging yorker from Lasith Malinga.
Sangakkara took a brilliant catch to remove JP Duminy, before Thisara Perera and Rangana Herath shared six wickets as South Africa were skittled out in 31.5 overs in the first of the five-match series.