Of course, Sri Lanka had never lost a Test in Durban before. In the previous two encounters, they won one and drew the other.
Of course, they managed to bowl South Africa out for a sub-300 score twice in their third encounter at the venue.
But to bet on Sri Lanka winning the Test this time would still have been considered unwise. For, this is what had happened in their last three Tests: 366-run defeat, innings and 40-run defeat and 423-run defeat.
The chase of 304 in Durban also looked like going nowhere with six of their batsmen dismissed in single-digit scores. But one man battled on.
Kusal Perera ensured, with a sparkling hundred, that it wasn’t snuffed out. When he got to his century, he’d already played his best-ever innings. Perera, with his team at 226/9, had to play one of the best-ever innings of all time in Test cricket to take his team to victory.
And, he did. He put on a 78-run last-wicket stand with Vishwa Fernando to pull off one of the most incredible Test wins ever.
Twitter was abuzz with accolades for Perera’s 200-ball 153 that included 12 fours and five sixes.