Mendis a cameo 74*, Tharanga 53*, after Sandaken strikes

Lakshan Sandakan

Sri Lanka knocked the daylights out of Scotland in the second practice match romping to a handsome 9-wicket triumph at the Kent County Cricket Grounds on Tuesday to put things in perspective by atoning for their bad defeat to Scotland in the previous game 2 days ago. It was an ideally blending all-round performance that set the tone in the Sri Lankan camp in a much required morale boost. After china man Lakshan Sandaken had put the screws on the Scotland frontline batting as they slipped to 77 for 7 before recovering to 166 all out in 42.1 overs, Sri Lanka lost no time making light of their target reaching 170 for the loss of Niroshan Dickwella for 29 in… Read More →

Mendis airs confidence ahead of Champions Trophy

Kusal Mendis

Twenty-two year old Kusal Mendis, in the grove of Sri Lanka’s new batting star in the making, did raise home fan expectancy in a chat with me on the eve of departure to England for the 2017 Champions Trophy. The young batting spark, who arrived on the international scene with a bang last year on the back of a rollicking match and series winning century against Australia last year, said, “I have worked hard on my game, and believe I’m well equipped to deliver with the bat in the all important Champions Trophy.” Mendis, a product from Moratuwa, who braved the odds of financial constraints as a kid who launched his cricket career on the sweat and toil of his… Read More →

Sri Lanka in Kent eight days ahead to get right gauge

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In an accelerated country to country upswing to the upcoming 2017 ICC Champions Trophy, Sri Lanka’s campaign has mounted in full throttle with the 15-member squad headed by skipper Angelo Mathews going through the final peak level fine tuning throes. A significant feature to Sri Lanka’s bid to land the jackpot that has seen an ace in the coaching expertise pack in former South African speedster, Allan Donald is an eight-day ahead of schedule landing on English shores. This step by Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) is interpreted as a key acclimatizing preparatory factor by Mathews’ charges. It will pave the ground for Sri Lanka to play two warm-up matches against Scotland which the Sri Lanka Cricket management has accentuated at… Read More →

Champions Trophy build up from Centre of Excellence in Kandy

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Striving for excellence is Sri Lanka Cricket’s (SLC) slogan word, and what better a platform to take off than the Provincial Centre Of Excellence in Kandy. Of course, the immediate goal is the June 1 ICC Champions Trophy, and indeed the big build up in the Sri Lankan camp borders on aiming for that big pot of gold. That the take off has been ideally from the Provincial Centre of Excellence located in the hill country’s Pallekelle on an auspicious note since last Wednesday is significant. From the pomp of a ceremonial opening in the historic city having paid homage to the sacred relic at the Dalada Maligawa led by SLC President, Thilanga Sumathipala, Secretary, Mohan De Silva and other… Read More →

Southern Province worthy champs 

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SLC U-19 PROVINCIAL ONE-DAY TOURNAMENT 2017 School cricket’s extravaganza – the Under-19 Provincial One-Day Tournament 2017 mooted by Sri Lanka Cricket culminated with Southern Province taking the cake. Southern Province was on course to make light of Western Province South’s 189 in 49.1 overs when bad weather interrupted play. At that stage Southern Province was well placed on 134 for 4 wickets in 34 overs, but with the bad weather creeping in, the umpires declared Southern Province winners by 26 runs on the Duckworth & Lewis system in the final played on Sunday at the R. Premadasa Stadium. The keen tussle expected did not materialize with Western Province South’s batsmen failing to produce the form that saw them amass a… Read More →

Allan Donald entry adds hype to SL Champions Trophy build up

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The entry of former South African demon pace bowler, Allan Donald to the Sri Lankan cricket camp in the countdown to the June Champions Trophy in England does add a high noon dimension to the showpiece build up. Indeed, the big rumble is the Champions Trophy, and the presence of  one of world cricket’s elite bowlers in the fast bowling business that earned Donald the nickname ‘White Lightning’ putting the Sri Lankans thro their paces is a highly buoying factor to Sri Lanka. The lightning fast man with the ball in the 1990s to the early 2000 era did see Allan Donald regarded as the most feared red lethal bowler of his time. So much so that his pairing with… Read More →

Dinesh Chandimal continues century run vein as Colombo clinch title

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SLC Super Provincial Tournament 2017 Sri Lanka batsman Dinesh Chandimal rose to the occasion to hog the limelight with a match winning unbeaten century to steer Colombo to a the SLC Super provincial Tournament 2017 title by defeating Galle by a massive 137 runs in the final at the R. Premadasa Stadium yesterday. It was indeed a well won title by Colombo having brushed off an early rustiness that had been a backseat early setback having trailed Kandy at the start of the tournament. It was literally Chandimal’s tournament given the batsman ship the right hander produced in reeling off a century trait that was a swaying dominative factor in guiding his side to the title. Galle posted a massive… Read More →

Samarawickrama century blitz takes Galle in to final

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Young batting prodigy Sadeera Samarawickrema has got everything right with the bat, and his match winning 120 against Dambulla.in the must win match to take Galle to the final of the 2017 Super Provincial Tournament yesterday at the R. Premadasa Stadium would go down as the ultimate; the ultimate to going the distance to have booked a place in the Sri Lanka’s Champions Trophy squad. Indeed, the Sri Lanka A star and Colts CC, and former St. Joseph’s College opening batsman could well consider himself quite unfortunate; unfortunate that the dictates of the form book did not realize the obvious dream ticket to jet it across to the England destination where instant cricket’s showpiece June 1 to 18 event next… Read More →

Jayasuriya and Fernando take Colombo to final in style A

Shehan Jayasuriya

As the heat mounted in the countdown to finding the finalists in the SLC Super Provincial Tournament, Colombo was first to the post upstaging Kandy by 4 wickets on day 6 on Wednesday at the R. Premadasa Stadium. It was a truly remarkable all-round performance by Colombo anchored by the bowlers that set up Colombo’s win in consummate ease in what turned out to be an anti climax in what had carried a pre-match hype of a tight match. That was given the strong clout Kandy had enjoyed throughout the tournament having won all but one of their matches, and of course the fact that Colombo had limped in to the reckoning from a poor start to the tournament. But… Read More →

Ton up Banuka Rajapakse ignites old form: Dambulla upset Colombo; Galle down Kandy

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SLC Super Provincial Tournament – Day 5 Results Dambulla’s Banuka Rajapakse, the former Royal College, SSC, and Chilaw Marians fiery batsman, did fire straight from the hip in a scorching three figure innings of 117 in mounting an upset 44-run win over Colombo on Monday, the fifth day’s proceedings of the Super Provincial Tournament. Rajapakse was in full cry reviving memories of his hey day Royal College batsman ship that made him quite a batting sensation at that level. It was Man of the Match rewarding stuff for the 25-year old Rajapakse. He set up the base for a huge Dambulla total of 316 for 8 wickets in 50 overs having figured in a productive 155- run third wicket alliance… Read More →

Kandy lead table with 6 points, Colombo close second with 5 points 

Colombo went on to chalk up its second successive win in a forceful comeback on day-4 following a tie and a loss on the first two days while Kandy pocketed its third win atoning for the loss to Colombo in the previous game in the ongoing Super Provincial Tournament. Kandy’s win saw them lead the table with 6 points with Colombo a close second with 5 points. Colombo beat Galle by 3 wickets in a high scoring match displaying the depth as good chasers by topping Galle’s 299 for 9 in 50 overs at the R. Premadasa Stadium while Kandy registered a 39-run win over Dambulla having totaled 323 for 5 wickets in 50 overs at the Dambulla Stadium. Dambulla… Read More →

Kapugedera, Malinga in squad for Champions Trophy

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2017 a fairytale comeback for Kapugedera? The year 2017 could well go down as the comeback year in international cricket for Chamara Kapugedera. At age 30 the right hander, who had conspicuously evaporated off the international cricketing radar appearing and disappearing in fits and starts following an erosion of early promise, has indeed ignited new expectations in the breasts of home cricket fans. What has certainly set off the buzz is the naming of the Kandy born Kapugedera in a 15-man squad for the June 1 to 18 Champions Trophy in England and Wales. Kapugedera’s inclusion has been on suddenly looming from the pedestrian 20 to 30 odd scores in the sparse ODI and T20 outings to mounting a sound… Read More →

Sri Lanka in ideal build up for 2017 ICC Champions Trophy countdown

Asanka Gurusinha

Sri Lanka’s build up for the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy to be held in England from June 1 to 18 is indeed the high stakes fusion accentuated on a six-day high intensity endurance and performance program now under full swing. That Sri Lanka Cricket’s (SLC) think tank support staff has embarked on such a preparatory course while prioritizing the climatic conditions in Kandy and Diyatalawa for the team to acclimatize  in altitude training to English conditions is certainly the ideal take off for instant cricket’s extravaganza. To the cricket world, the ICC Champions Trophy is one of the game’s blockbusters akin to the Cricket World Cup, and indeed it is a momentum gathering gallop for the participating teams. In that… Read More →

Kandy chalk up successive wins in SLC Super Provincial Tournament

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Kandy chalked up successive wins in the ongoing Sri Lanka Cricket Super Provincial Tournament that got underway on April 9. The tournament mooted by SLC in bringing grassroots talent island-wide in to one basket, saw some high scoring matches with three centurions on the first day. Lahiru Milantha scored 106 for Dambulla versus Colombo, and Sri Lanka cricketer Dinesh Chandimal in turn chalked up116 not out for Colombo in a tied encounter with both teams scoring identical scores of 289 in 50 overs. In the Galle versus Kandy match that yielded 696 runs between the two sides with Kandy scraping through by one wicket, the inform Sri Lanka A prodigy Sadeera Samarawickrama, who has been nudging the selectors for a… Read More →

Bangladesh prevail, but Malinga another magical feat

Lasith Malinga Hat-trick

The luck of the coin does matter in limited overs cricket, and that Bangladesh optimized the discretion of batting first by a bizarre 71-run posting by Soumya Sarkar and Imrul Kayes was a calamity that Sri Lanka was never able to weather at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Thursday’s day night. The 45-run win gave the touring team a 1-all clean slate of a drawn series in all three forms of the game, but fell short of their campaign of denting Sri Lanka’s unblemished record of claiming a series win in either the Test, ODI or T20 series. In the final T20 decider one had to hand it to Bangladesh in unleashing a batting salvo. The run rioting Sarkar whose… Read More →