The Royal-Thomian 2nd XI encounter, a.k.a. the Mini Battle ended in a draw this evening at Mount Lavinia, after two exciting days of cricket.
Royal College, having won the toss on a typical Mount Lavinia wicket with a tinge of fresh grass on it, had no hesitation in putting the hosts in to bat yesterday morning. The decision seemed justified at first as the Thomian top order struggled to come to terms with the assistance that was provided by the pitch.
However a scintilating 157 runs by Thenuka Liyanage turned the match on its head, as the Thomians declared at 273 for the loss of 8 wickets shortly after tea. Shehan Silva played a useful supporting role with 39 runs, while Sonal Amarasekera was the tormentor in chief with the new ball, taking 4 wickets for 66 runs.
Royal in reply ended the first day at 37 for 2. Resuming play this morning, Royal lost wickets at regular intervals as the 15 year old pair of Nathan Caldera (4/60) and Dhiren de Silva (4/44) kept chipping into the Royal batting line up and ended with impressive returns for themselves. Royalist Harindu Palihawadana was the only batsman standing between STC and a potential follow on by Royal. He ended the innings with a magnificent 110, only after ensuring that Royal would not have to follow on. Royal were eventually all out for 207, giving STC a first innings lead of 66 runs.
The Thomians changed the batting order in the second innings, looking for quick runs and a possible declaration. However, things did not go according to plan, as once again, wickets kept tumbling at regular intervals. Thomian Anuk Palihawadana playing the role of sheet anchor ensured that there were no real blushes in the Thomian dugout, with a solid 30 not out at the end of the mandatory overs. Eventually, the Thomians had to be content with a first innings win at this year’s encounter, while retaining the Reid-Gunesekera Shield.
S Thomas’ College Vs Royal College mini battle match at Mount Lavinia On 6/7 March 2020.
Royal College won the toss and chose to field first.
S. Thomas’ College 273/8 Declared in 75.2 Overs
Thenuka Liyanage 157 (204 Balls 17×4 and 3×6), Shehan Silva 39,
Sonal Amarasekara 4/66 Dan yabesh 2/41
Royal College Overnight 37/2, 207 all out in 74.5 Overs
Harindu Palihawadana 110 (195 Balls 17×4)
Nathan Caldera 4/60 Dhiren de Silva 4/44
S Thomas’ College 2nd Innings 76/7 in 31.4 Overs at close
Anuk Palihawadana 30*
Dan Yabesh 3/21, Sadeesha Rajapakshe 2/28
Man Of the Match – Thenuka Liyanage (S. Thomas’)
Best Batsman – Harindu Palihawadena (Royal)
Best Bowler – Dhiren de Silva (S. Thomas’)
This marks the end of the second xi season, as all eyes turn to the Battle of the Blues, scheduled to be played out at the Sinhalese Sports Club grounds on the 12th, 13th and 14th of March.