National Super League four day tournament for 2023 kicked off today with two encounters between Kandy and Colombo at the SSC grounds and Dambulla and Galle at the R. Premadasa Stadium.
In the Kandy Vs Colombo clash, Colombo led by Nipun Dananjaya batted first. The two quick bowlers for Kandy, Nimsara Atharagalla and Amshi de Silva removed the Colombo top order early and then left arm spinner Lasith Embuldeniya also chipped in to make life miserable for the Colombo batters.
At one stage Colombo were 126/8 but the tail wagged big time for them as Prabath Jayasuriya and Nisala Tharaka put together an 82-run stand for the 9th wicket. Jayasuriya who scored his 4th first class half century top scored for Colombo with 51 while Tharaka who supported him brilliantly made 38.
Thanks to the 9th wicket partnership, Colombo somehow managed to crawl their way over to 214. Embuldeniya was the pick of the bowlers for Kandy taking 5 for 60 and Atharagalla also took 4 for 62.
In reply to Colombo’s total, Kandy were in a decent position at the end of Day 1 with a scoreline of 96 for 2. Unbeaten at the crease for Kandy were Oshadha Fernando on 32 and Sandun Weerakkody on 30.
Colombo – 214/10 (64.5) P Jayasuriya 51, L Embuldeniya 5/60
Kandy – 96/2 (20) S Weerakkody 30*, N Tharaka 1/18
In the encounter between Dambulla and Galle, Dambulla batted first and were bundled out for just 155 as pacer Kavishka Anjula took a 5 wicket haul to rattle their top order. Opening batter Nimesh Gunasinghe was the top scorer for Dambulla, making 31.
Asanka Manoj, who provided good support to Anjula, took 2 for 35 while Galle skipper Ramesh Mendis also chipped in with 2 wickets at the end.
At stumps on Day 1, Galle were on 90 for the loss of 3 wickets with former Sri Lankan skipper Angelo Mathews and upcoming batter Pasindu Sooriyabandara unbeaten in the middle with scores of 22 and 16 respectively. Galle opener Hashan Dumindu made 37 before getting castled by Chalana de Silva.
Dambulla – 155/10 (48.5) N Gunasinghe 31, K Anjula 5/23
Galle – 90/3 (29) H Dumindu 37, C De Silva 1/15