Brilliant Chandimal century gives Colombo title | Sunday Observer

Brilliant Chandimal century gives Colombo title

Dinesh Chandimal led Colombo from the front with a brilliant century.
Dinesh Chandimal led Colombo from the front with a brilliant century.

Dinesh Chandimal, the former Sri Lanka vice-captain led Colombo to the SLC Super Provincial 50-over title with a brilliant century that paved the way for their 137-run win over Galle in the final played under lights at the R Premadasa Stadium yesterday.

On a slow paced wicket Chandimal got to terms with it superbly to carve out an unbeaten 113 off 116 balls inclusive of three sixes and 11 fours to enable Colombo come up with a challenging total of 307-8 after winning the toss and batting first.

Galle’s run chase was wrecked by fast bowler Dushmanth Chameera whose early dismissals of the two leading run getters in the tournament Dimuth Karunaratne and Sadeera Samarawickrama proved a set back to the southerners.

Chameera got through the defence of Karunaratne for nine in the sixth over of the innings and then removed Samarawickrama for 29 when he had him caught in the slips to reduce Galle to 59-4 by the 12th over.

Following Chameera’s early success the latter half of the Galle batting was blown away by Thisara Perera who knocked them over from 112-4 to 127-8 with a burst of four wickets for 28 before a last ditch effort by Akila Dhananjaya and Malinda Pushpakumara who put on 43 for the ninth wicket off 4.3 overs only delayed the inevitable. Galle were eventually dismissed for 170 in the 31st over with Suranga Lakmal unable to bat following an injury to his leg.

Unlike Chandimal and Shehan Jayasuriya the Galle batsmen failed to adjust to the pace of the wicket which led to their eventual downfall.

A double strike by left-arm spinner Pushpakumara to get rid of Kithuruwan Vithanage for 25 and Angelo Jayasinghe for 2 within the space of four balls had Colombo in a little bit of trouble at 96-4 at the end of the 23rd over.

It was here that Jayasuriya joined his captain to pull the innings around with a 139-run stand for the fifth wicket off 133 balls that provided the launch pad for their final total.

Jayasuriya playing attractive cricket struck eight fours and a six in his 63-ball knock for 77.

With Chandimal anchoring the innings at one end it only needed a few lusty hits from the tail to get the total past the 300-run mark which they did without much fuss.

Pushpakumara who was the only bowler to bowl out his quota of ten overs was the pick of the Galle bowlers finishing with figures of 2 for 32 that included two maidens. As for the rest of the bowlers with the exception of leg-spinner Seekkuge Prasanna who conceded 23 runs in his five overs, they went for plenty with Dasun Shanaka being the most expensive being hammered for 63 runs off six overs.

Despite SLC opening the gates for free entry to the match there was only a handful of spectators to witness the final. It could be attributed to the lack of superstars in the present Lankan line-up with Lasith Malinga being the only one who could be ranked as one, but he was not a part of the tournament as he is representing Mumbai Indians in the ongoing IPL.