Nalanda look to make full exposure of 3 U19 WC cricketers | Daily News


91st edition of Battle of the Maroons cricket encounter:

Nalanda look to make full exposure of 3 U19 WC cricketers

NALANDA COLLEGE 1ST XI CRICKET TEAM: First row seated (from left): Ruwan Dilruk Dissanayake (Asst. Coach), Shanuka Dissanayake (Head Coach), Chamindu Wijesinghe, Avishka Perera (Captain), Thilak Waththuhewa (Principal), Raveen de Silva (Vice-Captain), Mahima Weerakoon, M.M.J. Marasinghe (P.O.G.), Saman Hettiarachchi (MIC). Back row standing (from left): Nikhil Abeygunasekara, Dineth Samaraweera, Chamodya Rajapaksha, Lakshan Mayadunna, Thamindu Kamalasuriya, Ranindu de Silva, Jithesh Wasala, Anuda Jithwara, Moksha Sankalpa, Chanul Athukorala, Vihanga Vimanga, Rashan Dissanayake. Picture by Herbert Perera

The 91st edition of Battle of the Maroons cricket encounter between arch rivals Ananda College and Nalanda College will take place at the SSC grounds on March 7 and 8 for the Dr. N.M. Perera Memorial Challenge Trophy.

Nalanda who have won three matches outright in 16 outings against Gurukula Kelaniya, Dharmasoka Ambalangoda and St. Sylvester’s Kandy and lost outright to Trinity College will be looking to their three players who figured in the Under 19 cricket World Cup this year to break their 67-year hoodoo of beating their traditional rival.

Their last victory in a Maroons Battle was recorded in 1953 under W. Wimalaratne Silva’s captaincy and overall they have won only six matches with 72 ending in draws.

A centurion of last year’s encounter and fourth year coloursman Avishka Perera will lead Nalanda. He has scored 1161 runs inclusive of four centuries and eight fifties this season. His best was 117 scored twice against St. Sebastian’s and against Dharmapala while the other two centuries were against S. Thomas’ Mount Lavinia and Mahinda College Galle. He was awarded the Man of the Match prize in the previous battle and is expected to play a vital role as wicket-keeper having accounted to 35 victims.

Third year right hand batsman Raveen de Silva as deputy skipper is an all-rounder who has scored 650 runs and captured 50 wickets. Raveen’s highest score is 103 not out against Maliyadeva and his best bowling performance is 9/54 against St. Anthony’s, Wattala.

Another key player is all rounder and third year player Mahima Weerakoon who has piled up 600 runs including three fifties with top score of 82 not out against Mahanama. Mahima has bagged 36 wickets with 8 for 70 against Mahinda College, Galle as his best.

Stylish left hander Rashan Dissanayake who has notched up 412 runs inclusive of two fifties and Moksha Sahan who has scored 304 runs with a half century are the other key batsmen in the side. All rounders Ranindu de Silva and Jithesh Wasala who has reached the 350 run mark will be looking make early inroads into the Ananda batting.

Fresher and leg spinner Chamodhya Rajapaksha who has captured 45 wickets for the season with a best of 9 wickets for 50 against Dharmasoka College, Ambalangoda, left arm pacer Dineth Samaraweera with 35 wickets are the other bowlers whom Nalanda can rely on to tear through the Ananda batting.

Nalanda coach Shanuka Dissanayake who has been coaching them for the past two years said: “Our players have show cased their talent during the school season. We have three players who have represented the country in the Under 19 World Cup team and I hope they will use of that experience to bring us a win.”

Ruwan Dissanayake is the assistant coach and Saman Hettiarachchi the Master-in-Charge.


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