The final four encounters in round 1 of the Major Clubs T20 tournament took place today as the four semi-finalists from the four groups were finalised. Nugegoda S & WC, Sebastianites C & AC, SSC and Ace Capital were the winning teams from the final day of the group stage.
Ragama CC and Nugegoda S & WC faced each other in a battle for pride as both teams were searching for their first win of the tournament. Ragama CC who were invited to bat first at the P. Sara oval could only manage to score 133 before getting bowled out. At one point they were 43/6 but Sanjaya Chathuranga and Binura Fernando took them over the 100-run mark with a 62-run partnership for the 7th wicket. Fernando who scored his first T20 half century was their highest scorer with 54 from 34 deliveries while Chathuranga made 33 off 30. In bowling for Nugegoda, Chalana de Silva took 3 wickets for 16.
Although it was a below-par total the chase was never easy for Nugegoda as they lost wickets at regular intervals to keep Ragama in the game. Nugegoda required 27 from 16 balls when the 5th wicket fell and Ranitha Liyanarachchi who walked out as the number 7 took them over the line without any hiccups with a crucial cameo of 21 from 8. Tharindu Kaushal who kept the scoreboard ticking for Nugegoda made an unbeaten run with a ball 35. Shashika Dulshan who bowled tightly for Ragama was the pick of the bowlers taking 2 for 28. With this loss, Ragama ended the tournament without a single victory.
Unbeaten Colts CC took Sebastianites C&AC in an important clash at the NCC grounds. Although Sebastianites lost 1 game earlier, a big win here would’ve given them the chance to overcome Colts via net run rate. Colts CC won the toss in this clash and invited Sebastianites to bat first. A good opening wicket stand of 60 between Lohan de Zoysa and Abhisheak Liyanarachchi set the platform for them but a collapse in the middle order meant they could only score 142. De Zoysa top scored with 35 followed by Liyanarachchi who made 23. Colts skipper Akila Dananjaya was the key bowler for them taking 4 for 30.
Chasing 143 to keep their unbeaten run intact, Colts CC never really got going as their top order faltered big time. They lost the first 5 wickets inside 9 overs and before they could even score 40. Muditha Lakshan and Sheran Fonseka tried to resurrect their chase with a 50-plus stand for the 6th wicket but the job at hand was a bit too much. In the end, Colts could only make 115 in their 20 overs after losing 7 wickets, Fonseka top scored for them with 49 while Shashrika Pussegolla and Chamikara Edirisinghe took 2 wickets each in the bowling front for Sebastianites. Even though Colts CC lost the game, they advanced to the semi-finals via a better net run rate.
Baduraliya CC and SSC locked horns in another clash today which took place at the P.Sara Oval. Both the teams were already out of the tournament but it went right down the wire amidst rain interruptions. After SSC won the toss and opted to field first, Baduraliya produced a strong first-innings performance to post 175 in their 20 overs. Ranesh Silva top scored for them with an unbeaten 93 off 51 deliveries which included 10 fours and 4 sixes.
As rain interrupted the game midway, SSC was given a target of 150 in 17 overs and they managed to just crawl over the line with 2 wickets and 1 delivery remaining. Avishka Fernando was in destruction mode and scored a quickfire cameo of 30 in 10 balls to give SSC a flying start. Ranuda Somaratne contributed from the middle order with a vital 35 while Shevon Daniel also made 30 to strengthen the chase for SSC.
Ace Capital and Tamil Union faced each other in a virtual quarter-final at the NCC grounds as both the teams were unbeaten and the winners would qualify for the semis. After winning the toss Ace Capital skipper Roshan Jayatissa decided to bowl first. On the back of a solid middle order effort, Tamil Union managed to end on 163 in their 20 overs as skipper Lasitha Abeyratne top scored with 30 off 26. Ace Capital skipper Jayatissa and Wanuja Kumara took 2 wickets each in bowling for them.
Due to a rain interruption, the Ace Capital chase was reduced to 15 overs and they were given a target of 126 in 15 overs which they achieved after losing 7 wickets with 2 balls to spare. Opening batter Thanuka Dabare provided them with a fiery start as he made 59 off 26 with 6 fours and 5 sixes. Vijaykanth Viyaskanth the leg spinner tried his level best to turn the tides in favour of Tamil Union but his figures of 3 for 14 was not enough to prevent Ace Capital from crossing the finish line to eliminate Tamil Union from the tournament and book their place in the semi-finals.
As the group stage came to a close, only 3 games remain in the Major Clubs T20 tournament. The two semi-final clashes will take place on the 9th of June as NCC will face Moors SC while Colts CC will take on Ace Capital CC. Both games are scheduled to take place at the P.Sara Oval grounds.
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Ragama CC Vs Nugegoda S&WC
Ragama CC :- 133/10 (20)
Binura Fernando 54(34), Sanjaya Chathuranga 33(30)
Chalana de Silva 3/16, Rahul Gunasekara 2/36
Nugegoda S&WC :- 137/5 (19.2)
Tharindu Kaushal 35(35)*, Rahul Gunasekara 24(18)
Shashika Dulshan 2/28, Chamath Gomez 1/11
Nugegoda S&WC won by 5 wickets
Sebastianites C&AC Vs Colts CC
Sebastianites C&AC :- 142/10 (20)
Lohan de Zoysa 35(27), Abhisheak Liyanarachchi 23(19)
Akila Dananjaya 4/30, Malka Madushanka 2/8
Colts CC :- 115/7 (20)
Sheran Fonseka 49(39), Muditha Lakshan 31(25)
Shashrika Pussegolla 2/23, Chamika Edirisinghe 2/22
Sebastianites C&AC won by 27 runs
SSC Vs Baduraliya CC
Baduraliya CC :- 175/5 (20)
Ranesh Silva 93(51)*, Rohan Sanjaya 28(23)
Kavindu Nadeeshan 2/32, Shehan Hasaranga 1/16
SSC :- 150/8 (16.5)
Ranuda Somaratne 35(28), Avishka Fernando 30(10)
Anuk Fernando 3/22, Rasanjana Silva 1/14
SSC won by 2 wickets (DLS)
Ace Capital Vs Tamil Union
Tamil Union :- 163/8 (20)
Lasith Abeyratne 30(26), Salindu Pathirana 29(27)
Wanuja Kumara 2/18, Roshan Jayatissa 2/40
Ace Capital :- 126/7 (14.4)
Thanuka Dabare 59(26), Sithara Gimhana 30(28)
Vijaykanth Viyaskanth 3/14, Kavindu Pathirathne 2/16
Ace Capital won by 3 wickets (DLS)