SLC T20 League Game 8: Too close yet too far for Kandy

Team Kandy’s misfortunes in this year’s SLC T20 League continued in the tournament’s Dambulla round as well when they lost against Team Dambulla by six runs on Sunday, 26 August. This was their fourth defeat out of four games and they thus remain win-less with only two more games left in the tournament.

Chasing 218 to win, Kandy ended up at 211/7 in their 20 overs, in spite of some fine display of batting by their stand-in skipper Dasun Shanaka, who made a fiery 81 in 46 balls with five fours and five sixes. Their regular skipper Angelo Mathews was rested for the match.

The six-footed all-rounder Shanaka shared 96 runs for the fourth-wicket with 21-year-old former Richmondite, Charith Asalanka who hammered 43 in 24 balls with four fours and two sixes.

Then the eighth-wicket pair of Nisala Tharaka Gamage and Lasith Malinga was left with scoring 45 runs in the last three overs. Yet they ended up six runs short of the target.

Dilruwan Perera took two for 20 in two overs for Dambulla.

Earlier, opener Danushka Gunathilaka gave a fine start to the Dambulla innings with 87 runs, made in 54 deliveries with 14 fours and a six.

Ramith Rambukwella, opening with Gunathilaka for Dambulla, made 38 in 24, with three sixes and four fours, sharing 85 runs for the first-wicket in 7.5 overs.

Lahiru Gamage bowled best for Kandy with figures of 2/42 and his new-ball partner, veteran Malinga, who is eying a re-entry into the national side, finished his quota of four overs for 25 runs without a wicket.

The final round of the tournament will take place at Pallekele International Stadium in Kandy on Wednesday and Thursday, 29 and 30 August, before the grand finale, to be played between the two top teams, under lights at R. Premadasa on Sunday, 2 September.

Brief Scores – Game 8, Played in Dambulla –

Dambulla 217/4 in 20 overs (Danushka Gunathilaka 87 in 54 balls, Ramith Rambukwella 38 in 24 balls, Wanindu Hasaranga De Silva 27 n.o. in 14 balls, Isuru Udana 27 n.o. in 9 balls, Sadeera Samarawickrama 23 in 19 balls; Lahiru Gamage 2/42)

Kandy (won the toss) 211/7 in 20 overs (Dasun Shanaka 81 in 46 balls, Charith Asalanka 43 in 24 balls, Nisala Gamage 34 n.o. in 22 balls, Lasith Malinga 14 n.o. in 6 balls; Dilruwan Perera 2-20, Shehan Madushanka 2-45).

* In the above photo is Dambulla opener Danushka Gunathilaka who scored 87 runs in 54 deliveries.