Avishka Fernando guide Sri Lanka U19s to level the series

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Avishka Fernando guides Sri Lanka U19s to level the series

Skipper Avishka Fernando led from the front for Sri Lanka U19s as they beat South Africa U19s by 12 runs (D/L method) in the second Youth ODI match played at NCC grounds today.

Fernando’s excellent knock of 97 off 115 balls which had 11 crisp boundaries and 2 sixes propelled the hosts’ to 209 which they defended well courtesy some disciplined and tight bowling before rain halted play in the 48th over of the South African innings.

Earlier in the morning, after taking the first lease of the wicket, Sri Lanka U19s lost Pathum Nissanka (4) in the second over when he was caught behind by Ricardo Vasconcelos off left-arm fast-bowler William Senedin.

Vishva Chathuranga made a brisk 20 off 27 before lobbing it straight to gully fielder, Jesse Christensen off Senedin. Avishka and his school mate, Mishane Silva steadied the innings till the 18th over before left-arm spinner Jade De Klerk took two crucial wickets of Silva and Sammu Ashan with two arm deliveries, which trapped both the batsmen plumb in front and restricted the hosts’ to 73 for 4.

Aloysian right-hander Ashen Bandara partnered up with his captain to resurrect the Lankan innings adding 61 for the 5th wicket before he swept straight to square-leg after scoring a patient 60-ball 24.

Wicket-keeper batsman Navindu Nirmal also from St. Aloysius’ College came to the crease and upped the scoring rate by involving in a run-a-ball 51 for the 6th wicket before captain Fernando unfortunately holed up at mid-wicket to a brilliant catch by Akhona Mnyaka. Nirmal made a cheeky 41-ball 26 before being castled by Wiaan Mulder as Sri Lanka U19s were bowled out for 209 in the 50th over.

Chasing 210 runs to win, the young South Africans were pegged back early when right-arm seamer Mishane Silva removed both Ricardo Vasconcelos and Raynard Van Tonder cheaply.

Sri Lanka U19s brought on their heavy barrage of spinners early on to put brakes to the South African run-flow. Left-arm spin twins, Damitha Silva and Praveen Jayawickrama bowled their full quotas giving away 42 and 27 respectively while picking up a wicket each

Playing his first Youth ODI, Isipathana college off-spinner Ayana Siriwardana took 2 wickets late into the match bowling 7 overs which ultimately changed the course of the game.

After being 140 for 7, Kenan Smith took the visitors closer to the target hammering 3 fours and 2 sixes during his unbeaten 60-ball 46 but the rain gods deprived a tense finish.

South Africa U19s won the first match by 16 runs two days ago at P. Sara Oval grounds.
The third and final match will be worked out at SSC grounds on Wednesday.

Sri Lanka U19s – 209 all out in 49.2 overs: Avishka Fernando 97, Vishva Chathuranga 20, Navindu Nirmal 26, Ashen Bandara 24, Willaim Senedin 3/46, Wiaan Mulder 2/39, Daniel Moriarty 2/46, Jade De Klerk 2/23.

South Africa U19s – 184/8 in 47.4 overs: Wiaan Mulder 41, Kenan Smith 46*, Jesse Christensen 35, Ayana Siriwardana 2/22, Mishane Silva 2/8.