132nd Battle of the Blues:
Tailenders rescue Thomians
*Half centuries by Thomian skipper
Chamod, Kavindu and Madhushan:
* Royal captain Ramith Rambukwella -
83 & 53 n.o. and 4 for 60:
Thomians wagged their tail strongly but Royal settled the scores by
close on second day of their 132nd Battle of the Blues three-day
encounter continued at SSC ground yesterday.
In reply to Royal’s first innings total of 276 for 9 declared on day
one, S. Thomas’ made a rich 323 all out. Trailing by 47 runs on the
first innings, another explosive half century by captain Ramith
Rambukwella helped Royal to score 99 for one at close in their second
essay, an overall lead of 52 runs with nine second innings wickets in
Resuming the day at their overnight first innings total of 65 for 3,
S.Thomas’ were in deep trouble losing the fourth wicket with the total
on 69 when the overnight batsman Nuwan Kavinda was caught by Abeysekera
off medium paceman Imran Khan for 36. At this stage as if the Thomians
would concede a considerable lead to Royal.
But it was not so as the Thomian middle and low order batsmen played
a responsible innings to make sure they go beyond 300-run mark. Kavindu
Perera (61 off 80 balls with eight fours), skipper Chamod Pathirana (63
off 109 balls with ten boundaries) and No. 9 Madushan Ravichandrakumar
(69 off 78 balls with nine fours) exposed all weak links in the Royal
bowling department with a galaxy of strokes to keep the crowd
When Royal were looking forward to a considerable first innings lead,
the Thomian middle order batsmen came in to action.
Chamod Pathirana played a truly captain’s innings and if not for his
courageous knock the Thomian innings would never have been together.
He picked only the loose balls to punish while he played the good
deliveries with full respect. He shared a magnificent 118-run
partnership for the fifth wicket with Kavindu Perera. Royal were in a
complete shock as Pathirana and Perera made it a habit of robbing runs
off every Royal bowler they faced,
Then there were three quick wickets with the addition of 11 runs to
the total as the Thomians were in trouble once more with the total
reading 194 for 7. It was then that bowler tuned batsman Madushan
Ravichandrakumar got his act together with a useful half century which
eventually turned out to be the top score of the Thomian innings. Coming
into the big match with a top score of only 33 and an aggregate of mere
180 plus, Ravichandrakumar posed the biggest headache and frustrated
Royal bowlers during his 78-ball innings to score a blistering 69.
He shared two important partnerships which once again allowed
Thomians to resurrect their innings. He added 59 runs for the eight
wicket with Neomal Wickremasekera and shared a further 57-run alliance
for the ninth wicket with Umesh Fernando. The last three Thomian wickets
produced as many as 129 runs and that alone demonstrate the control S.
Thomas’ tailenders had.
Interestingly, the match has turned out to be a top performance event
of the two captains as both Ramith Rambukwella and his vis-à-vis Chamod
Pathirana excelled in both bat and ball. Rambukwella (83) and Pathirana
(63) made half centuries in their teams’ respective first innings.
Pathirana had 5 for 101 in the Royal first innings while Rambukwella
bagged 4 for 54 in the Thomian first innings. The dominance of the
captains continued in the second innings too as Rambukwella made twin
half centuries and remained unbeaten on 53, made off 88 balls with seven
Today is the third and final day of the match which is set for an
interesting finish if Royal go for quick runs in the morning session and
set Thomains a challenging target.
276 for 9 decl.
(Ramith Rambukwella 83, Bhanuka Rajapaksa 55,
Chamod Pathirana 5 for 101, Ravichandrakumar 4 for 50).
(Overnight 65 for 3)
ASIRI WICKREMANAYAKE b. Anjana 01
JAVED BONGSO b. Deva 19
NUWAN KAVINDA c. Abeysekera b.Khan 36
SACHIN PEIRIS lbw b. Deva 05
KAVINDU PERERA c.Abeysekera b. Rabukwella 61
CHAMOD PATHIRANA c & b Rambukwella 63
RAMITH GUNARATNE b Rambukwella 05
NEOMAL W’SEKERA c. Dissanayake b. R’wella 27
M RAVICHANDRAKUMAR c. R’wella b. R’pakse 69
UMESH FERNANDO c. R’wella b. R’[akse 33
MEVANTHA DE SILVA not out 01
EXTRAS:(1b, 5lb, 6w) 13
TOTAL: all out 323
BATTING TIME: 77.5 overs
FALL OF WICKETS: 1-1 (Wickremanayake), 2-48 (Bongso), 3-60 (S. Peiris), 4-69 (Kavinda),
5-183 (Perera), 6-193 (Gunaratne), 7-194 (Pathirana), 8-253 (Wickremasekera), 9-310 (Fernando), 10-323 (Ravichandrakumar).
BOWLING: Khan 11-0-60-1, Kudahetti 6-1-26-1; Rajapakse 16.2-1-69-2, Deva 10-1-61-2;,
Pathmanathan 13-4-35-0, Rambukwella 19-4-54-4, Dissanayake 2-0-22-0.
WARUNA DISSANAYAKE c. Peiris b. Wickremasekera 12
RAMITH RAMBUKWELLA not out 53
SUPUN SUBASINGHE not out 31
TOTAL: for 1 wkt at close 99
BATTING TIME: 29.4 overs
FALL OF WICKETS: 1-32 (Dissanayake)
BOWLING: (to date): Pathirana 8.4-0-37-0; De Silva 7-3-12-0; Wickremasekera 6-1-21-1, U. Fernando 4-0-9-0, Ravichandrakumar 4-1-18-0