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Sunday, 11 March 2012

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Trinity beat Antonians to break 26-year hoodoo

Trinity College broke a 26-year-old hoodoo and also established a new record of outright wins in school cricket when they beat their traditional rivals St. Anthony's College by an innings and one run in their 96th "Battle of the Blues" played for the John Halangoda Memorial Trophy at the Asgiriya Stadium, Kandy yesterday. As pre-match predictions indicated the Lions completely outplayed the Eagles. The Antonians had chances of saving the match, but they threw away them at crucial times.

This win brought Trinity College their 11th outright win for the season and 10 of them by an innings.

The tally of the series now stands at 23 wins by Trinity 12, by St. Anthony's College, while 61 matches have ended in draws.

The last time Trinity College won was in 1986 under Thushara Weerasuriya. By a coincidence playing for Trinity in that match was late Susil Premasinghe and his son Janishka played in yesterday's match and was adjudged the Man of the Match getting a bag of 6 for 85 and also top scoring with an elegant 61 and played a major role in Trinity's victory. He has also captured over 100 wickets for the season and only the third Trinitian to do so.

The Antonians resuming from their overnight score 77 for 4 and lost an early wicket of anchorman and opener who was run out. A seventh wicket stand of 65 between Skipper Kanishka Ranaraja 42 (90 balls, 5 fours) and Saranga Rajaguru 39 (69 balls, 1 six, 4 fours) briefly held their hopes of averting the follow on. But their tail failed to wag and were all out for 192 which gave Trinity a lead of 110 runs. Left-arm spinner Alwin Fernando bowled best to capture 4 for 41.

Following on the Antonians lost their way at the start itself and were 26 for 5 at one stage. They hung on briefly through a sixth wicket partnership 42 between Kanishka Ranaraja (21) and Kavinda Pullikuttiarachchi 23 (103 balls, 3 fours) but the writing was on the wall.

Despite some dogged batting by Pullikuttiarachchi and Saranga Rajaguru (25) who batted for 20 overs in putting on 16 runs.

The Trinitians finally made the breakthrough after completing the mandatory overs ahead of time and around 13 minutes of playing time was left when they posted victory.

Medium pacer Amrith Srimahan took 5 for 39 while Janishka Premasinghe 4 for 45.

Awards:

Best Fielder: Niroshan Dickwella (TCK)

Best Bowler: Amrith Srimahan (TCK)

Best Batsman: Aikla Jayasundera (TCK)

Man of the Match: Janishka Premasinghe (TCK)

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