|We were beaten
by a better side - Strauss
By Sa’adi Thawfeeq
England captain Andrew Strauss admitted that his
team had been thoroughly beaten by a better side
after Sri Lanka had whipped them by ten wickets in
the World Cup quarter-final match played at the R
Premadasa Stadium yesterday.
“Sri Lanka was able to bowl a lot of dot balls at us
to build pressure and we weren’t able to take
advantage of the platform,” said Strauss.
“But we have to be honest; we haven’t been good
enough during the tournament. This was a step too
far,” he said.
For England it has been a long winter from home
and the strain showed in their performance. They
looked a spent force long before the finish.
Strauss also blamed the long tour schedule and the
mounting injuries to his side that also played a
part in the way they performed.
He said that he would sit with the England selectors
and discuss his future as captain of the one day
Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara praised his side
for fighting back hard and keeping up the pressure
after they had lost the toss and was forced to field
Sangakkara said the double century opening
partnership of 231 runs off 237 balls between Upul
Tharanga and Tillakaratne Dilshan reminded him of
Headingley in 2006. On that occasion Tharanga in
partnership with Sanath Jayasuriya flayed the
England bowlers to the tune of 286, a world record
for the first wicket.
“Losing the toss it was important that we started
well with the ball and Dilshan gave us that early
breakthrough,” said Sangakkara.
“We can’t get too far ahead of ourselves, we’ve
just got to keep our heads down,” he said.
Sri Lanka face New Zealand in the first semi-finals
on Tuesday and they will be keeping a close eye on
the fitness of their champion spinner Muthiah
Muralitharan whom Sangakkara said had pulled up a
bit stiff, but was confident that he will be fit for
the New Zealand game.
Man of the Match Dilshan praised the wicket and said
that he intends carrying his form forward for the
rest of the tournament.
“It was a fantastic one-day wicket. It got better
and better. We knew if we started well we could
build up from there,” Dilshan said.
Matches’ end in draws
The 106th Battle of the Lovers, the ‘Big Match’
between Richmond and Mahinda ended in a draw at
Galle International Stadium yesterday. It would have
been a keen contest if not for the scattered rain
that was a feature throughout the match. Richmond
who was 131 for 7 at the end of the first days play
limped to 157 yesterday and in reply Mahinda
declared on 78 for 9, with the intention of making a
match of it. Dananjaya de Silva was the pick of the
bowlers for Mahinda claiming 5 wickets for 44 runs.
In their second essay Richmond declared on 32-5 and
at close Mahinda was 32 for no loss.
Ananda Sastralaya dominated their 48th annual
cricket encounter that ended in a draw with St.
Mary’s, Matugama played at Matugama Public Ground
The 8th Battle of Two Cities, the annual encounter
between St. Aloysius’ Galle and Rahula College
Matara, ended in a tame draw at Matara yesterday.
- At Galle International Stadium:
Richmond 131-7 contd 157 (71) (Mahesh Sandaruwan
45, Kavindu Thimuth 21, Dananjaya de Silva 20,
Chalana de Silva 5/44, Sohan Kariyawasam 3/15,
Kaushalya Gajasinghe 2/35) and 32/5 dec (14.5)
(Mahesh Sandaruwan 11, Kaushalya Gajasinghe 3/8)
Mahinda 78/9 dec (47.1) (Sohan Kariyawasam 23
n.o., Dhananjaya de Silva 5/29, Dileepa
Priyadarshana 3/16) and 32-0 (7) (Udara
Ranasinghe 19 n.o.)
- At Matugama:
Ananda Sastrayala 205 and 219-6 (54) (Rasindu
Krishan 117 n.o., Pasindu Maduwantha 50 n.o.,
Mihiraj 2/44, R. Sameera 2/85)
St. Mary’s, Matugama 120-7 condt 174 (52.3) (R.
Sameera 27, Mihiraj 23, S. Welgama 36, Ruchira
Adikaram 5/56) and 92-1(27) (Chamara 29)
- At Uyanwatte Stadium Matara
Rahula 198 and 94-5 (Dulshan Kalatunga 31,
Priyasad Gamage 26, Santhusha 3/34)
St. Aloysius’ 32-1 contd 129 (Chanaka Danushka
23, Chaturanga Madushan 21, I. Uyanhewa 5/54)
and 119-6 (Chanaka Danushka 52, M. Ekanayake
Slow scoring at Kegalle
St. Mary’s, Kegalle managed 158 in their first
innings against Kegalu Vidyalaya on the first
day of their 33rd encounter played at the
Kegalle Esplanade yesterday. Kegalu Vidyalaya
was 10 for no loss at the end of the days play.
St. Mary’s, Kegalle 158 (51.4) (Mohommed Malik
32, Mahinda Gunaratne 26, Chaturanga Ranaweera
40, Asanka Balasuriya 3/23, Samadhi Dassanayake
3/52, Udara Thilakasiri 4/38)
Kegalu Vidyalaya 10-0 (4)
|105th Battle of the Maroons
M. Minhaz in
Dharmaraja College ended the long spell of drawn
encounters for the past three decades when they
registered a seven-wicket win over Kingswood College
in the hill capital’s 105th Battle of the Maroons
concluded at the Pallekelle International Cricket
Stadium, Pallekelle yesterday.
The last time a decision was reached in this battle
was in 1980 when the Rajans won under Janaka Mendis.
The last Kingswood victory was in 1958 under Maurice
This win increases the Rajan,s tally of wins to
34 against 19 by Kingswood College.
From the first ball the Rajans dominated this
battle. After skittling out Kingswood College for
117, they declared at their overnight score of 169
for 6, put their opponents into an uncomfortable
position of having to bat the whole day to save the
The Kingswoodians 52 runs behind on the first
innings, did not fare any better in the second
innings losing their first four wickets for 22 runs.
A stubborn fifth wicket stand of 49 between
Lakshitha Madhushan 30 (6 fours 30 balls) and
skipper Yasindu Athukorale 17 (3 fours, 78 balls)
only delayed the inevitable. Before long they were
dismissed for 127 leaving the Rajans to get 76 runs
for victory which they did for the loss of three
Regional Manager of Commercial Bank Limited Ajith
Narampanawa was the chief guest and he distributed
the awards with guest of honour Superintendent of
Begambara Prisons Tissa Jayasinghe.
Nuwan Karunaratne of Dharmaraja was adjudged the
Man of the Match.
Kingswood 117 and 127 (68.1) (Lakshitha Madushan 31,
Madhisha Premawardena 20, N. Unamboowe 17, Nuwan
Karunaratne 3 for 36, Lahiru Herath 2 for 6).
Dharmaraja 169 for 6 decl. and 76 for 4 (20.5)
(Kavinda Wijekoon 12, Sasith Gunasekera 10, Sadun
Weerakoddy 24, Hemal Munaweera not out 12, Lahiru
Herath not out 12).
|36th annual Mustang trophy
leads Royal to victory with century
By Isuru Dilan
The star-studded Royal team led by Ramith
Rambukwella scored an emphatic seven-wicket win over
a hapless S. Thomas’ side in the 36th annual Mustang
trophy encounter played at the SSC grounds
Royal chasing a paltry total of 167, won the game in
right royal style using just 25 overs. The Thomians
who finished their innings on 167 all out were
completely demolished by a brilliant Royal outfit
who proved their class. With this win Royal took the
lead in the one-day series increasing their tally to
18 out of 36 encounters to 17 wins by the Thomians.
The gloomy weather conditions only allowed each
side 41 overs of play and Royal who won the toss
invited the Thomians to bat first. Interestingly the
Thomian skipper when asked what he would have done
if he had won the toss went on to say that he would
have batted first. There were some notable changes
from both camps with Royal going in with a solitary
change bringing in all-rounder Heshan Ramanayake in
place of Anjana Kudahetti while the Thomians made
two changes to their three-day game line up bringing
in left-arm leg-spinner Rishen Mathangaweera and top
order batsman Brian Dharmasena in place of Mevantha
de Silva and Javed Bongso.
The Thomian outfit didn’t look the same which fought
the ‘Big Match’ so courageously and almost ended up
with a win. The top order looked in a lot of trouble
against Guarav Dev and Imran Kahn who bowled with a
lot of pace. The Thomians had no clue against them.
Sachin Peiris and Asiri Wickramanayake made a minor
recovery with Peiris in particular scoring with a
lot of intent and aggression. Sachin got out for 29
while Asiri made 34.
The left-arm spin of Neomal Wickramasekera made a
noticeable contribution with a well made 34. The
spin king of Royal Devin Pathmanathan returned best
figures of 4 for 34 in 9 overs. The Royal quicks too
came up with a far better performance when compared
to the three-day game with Gaurav Deva, Imran Khan
and Banuka Rajapakse capturing a wicket apiece.
Royal were given a magnificent start by openers
Rambukwella and Waruna Dissananayke. The pair put on
a superb 149 runs for the first wicket before Waruna
got out for a stroke-filled 48. The partnership was
incidentally the third century stand during the 36
years of the Mustangs trophy. The Royal skipper was
on fire with some brutal hitting to all corners of
the ground. Ramith made a wonderful unbeaten 103 but
the rest of the batting which included Supun
Subasinghe and Imal Liyanage didn’t capitalise on
the opportunity as they made just two and five
respectively. Ramith hit 13 fours and a majestic six
in his 82-ball innings. He was adjudged the man of
the match for the second time having won the same
award in the 132nd Battle of the Blues a fortnight
Scores: S Thomas’ 167 (40.5) (Neomal Weerasekara 34,
Asiri Wickramanayke 34, Sachin Peiris 29, Devin
Pathmanathan 4/34,Gaurav Deva 2/29)
Royal 168-3 (24.5) (Ramith Rambukwella 103 n.o.,
Waruna Dissanayake 48).
|Mercantile 50 overs ‘B’
Singer wakes up from
slumber to beat MAS Unichela
The uncertainties of cricket were amply
demonstrated when Singer Sri Lanka ‘A’, after six
straight losses, woke up to beat the formidable MAS
Unichela ‘B’ by two wickets in the ongoing Coca
Cola/MCA Centenary Year 2011 ‘B’ Division 50 overs
Defending champions Janashakthi ‘B’ suffered their
third loss in seven outings, going down to LB
Finance by 34 runs, thus sliding down to No.4
position in the points table.
Debutants Union Bank finished their league matches
with a flourish beating Nations Trust Bank by eight
wickets. Union Bank finished with three wins in
seven matches failing to qualify for the
- At Colts: Singer SL ‘A’ beat MAS Unichela
‘B’ by 2 wickets.
MAS Unichela ‘B’ 102 (27.1) (M. Fernando 25, P.
Weerawarna 2/20, S. Peiris 3/30, IS Shamara
Singer ‘A’ 104-8 (29.4) (M. Fernando 35 n.o., M.
Lakmal 2/40, A. Sandaruwan 4/35, P. Koralagedera
- At Thurstan: LB Finance beat Janashakthi ‘B’
by 34 runs.
LBF 268-9 (50) (A Madusanka 83, Nayana Fernando
62, Roshane Silva 68 n.o., C. Amarasinghe 4/35,
R. Sampath 3/35)
Janashakthi ‘B’ 234-9 (50) (K. Bodhitha 76, N.
Wijesinghe 47, K. Dinudu 48 n.o., Roshen Silva
4/40, M. Pramesh 2/20)
- At Katunayake: Union Bank beat Nations Trust
Bank by 8 wickets.
NTB 161 (45.1) (D. Samarakkody 30, Ranesh
Fernando 25, A. Liyanage 25, D. Foux 25, M.
Thushara 20, N. Tharaka 4/49, W. Randeniya 2/12,
Shalindra Perera 2/15)
Union Bank 165-2 (29) (A. Perera 60, M.
Sandaruwan 47 n.o., S. Silva 37)
Thus the league stage of the tournament came to
a close after 28 matches.
Edirisinghe Trust Investments the only unbeaten
team (7 wins out of 7) along with MAS Unichela
‘B’, LB Finance and the defending champions
Janashakthi ‘B’ advanced to the semi-finals.
The semi-finals will be worked off on Wednesday,
March 30: ETI vs. Janashakthi ‘B’ at FTZ
grounds, Katunayake; LB Finance vs. MAS Unichela
‘B’ at the Colts grounds. The final is fixed for
Saturday, April 9 at the Colts grounds. – [LW]
|Schools should maintain the
spirit of Sports
The Minister of Sport
urged schools and sports bodies to sort their
problems amicably and settle differences in the true
spirit of sportsmanship without resorting to legal
Science College had obtained an Enjoining Order from
Court which resulted in the Schools Rugby
Association being prevented from holding the 2011
schools senior rugby tournament. The Minister had to
intervene in the matter and spoke to the schools and
the rugby association and the issue was resolved
with the number of teams in the schools division 1
segment ‘A’ being increased from 10 to 12, and
Science College agreeing to withdraw the case.
2011 on March 31
The Cricket Freeze
2011 – Pit stop annual social event of St
Sylvester’s College Old Boys Association Colombo
Branch will be held at the Sri Lanka Foundation
Institute, Colombo 7 on March 31 commencing 6.45 pm.
This event which is an annual social in the OBA
calendar is held to bring all the Sylvestrians
together and to work towards completion of the
college gymnasium project. All old Sylvestrians are
requested to participate.
Chilaw Marians on top
Malinda Pushpakumara excelled with the ball for
Chilaw Marians by claiming 6 for 46 to put Chilaw
Marians in a strong position at the end of the
second days play in their tier ‘A’ match against CCC
played at Katunayake yesterday.
At Reid Avenue, Suraj Randeev of Bloomfield made
headlines by claiming 8 for 88 on the first innings
SSC are in total control at NCC grounds against
Baduraliya CC. Captain Kaushal Silva hit a brilliant
129 in the SSC first innings to guide his team to
Army is in a spot of bother against Police at
Panagoda as they were reduced to 146 for 6 at the
end of the second days play.
Exchanges were even at Stanley Wijesundera MW in a
low scoring game between Ragama CC and Colts which
heads towards an interesting finish. At close Ragama
CC were 33 for 1.
Moors are in a strong position against Air force at
the end of the second days play in their tier ‘B’
match played at Braybrooke Place yesterday. Rajitha
Wickramarachchi (103) and Chathuranga de Silva (53)
guided Moors to 356 in their first innings with a
century and a half century respectively.
Dilhan Aravinda of Seeduwa Raddoluwa CC hit a
marathon 183 as his team posted 384 against Panadura
at Panadura Esplanade yesterday. The home team was
138-8 at close.
Exchanges were even at Welisara as Navy and BRC are
heading towards a draw.
Singha SC is holding a slight edge over Antonians SC
at BRC yesterday
Scores in brief
- At Katunayake
Chilaw Marians 344-7 and 113/5 (34) (Kithruwan
Vithanage 39, Milinda Siriwardana 2/32, Dinuka
CCC 133 (45.5) (Charith Fernando 23, Dhanushka
Gunathilake 23, Dilhan Cooray 31, Malinda
- At Reid Avenue
Bloomfield 372-9 and 14-0 (3)
Saracens 224 (65.1) (V. Fernando 35, Shihan
Kamaleen 45, Samith Dushantha 39, Rukshan
Weerasinghe 26, Mohomad Azlam 39, Suraj Randeev
- At Maitland Place
Baduraliya CC 161 and 95-2 (17) (Tharindu
Attanayake 55 n.o.)
SSC 149-2 contd 340-6 dec (85) (Kaushal Silva
129, Tharanga Paranavithana 46, Thilina Kandambi
28, Lasith Fernando 68, Omesh Wijesiriwardena
- At Panagoda
Police 272-9 contd 276 (91) (Tharanga Indika 28,
Supun Nirmal 33, Tharindu Weerasinghe 21, Aruna
Priyantha 61, Manjula Jayawardena 55, Amila
Mendis 55, Seekkuge Prasanna 3/98, Roshan
Army 142-6 (42) (Manjula de Soyza 52 n.o., Asela
Gunaratne 22, Seekkuge Prasanna 31, Dhammika
- At Stanley Wijesundera Mawatha
Ragama CC 134-8 contd 134 (46.2) (Michael
Vandort 72, Nayana Fernando 22, Sajeewa
Weerakoon 5/34, Dilruwan Perera 4/20) and 33-1
(17.3) (Lahiru Thirimanna 22)
Colts 195 (45.3) (Malinda Warnapura 63, Janith
Perera 25, Sajeewa Weerakoon 22, Madura Lakmal
2/67, Nilanka Premaratne 2/52, Malinga Bandara
- At Braybrooke Place
Air force 137 and 33-5 (17) (Kasun Madushanka
Moors 121-1 contd 356 (73.5) (Shantha
Kalavitigoda 20, Kasun Bodhisha 65, Rajitha
Wickramarachchi 103, Bhathiya Perera 30,
Chathuranga de Silva 53, Dilhara Lokuhettige 53,
Ajith Kumara 5/61)
- At Panadura Esplanade
Seeduwa Raddoluwa CC 323-5 contd 384 (111)
(Hashan Gunathilake 36, Mavan Fernando 31,
Dilhan Aravinda 183, Upul Fernando 29, Yasas
Thilakaretne 36, Amila Perera 3/80, Nishantha
Cooray 2/48, Yohan Arumathanthri 2/62)
Panadura 138-8 (48) (Yohan Arumathanthri 34,
Sudesh Umayanga 34, Carman Mapatuna 29, Romesh
Eranga 2/39, Chamara Soysa 2/39, Jeffrey
Vandersay 2/27, Ranil dhammika 2/18)
- At Welisara
BRC 9-0 contd 221-6 (68) (Dellon Udugamasuriya
66, Gihan Dilruk 34, Nimesh Perera 33, Weranga
Dissanayake 29 n.o., Udara Jayasundera 4/88)
- At Havelock Road
Singha SC 180 and 186 (49.2) (Lahiru Ashen 33,
Sriyan Sanjeewa 22, Mahesh Kumara 51, Chamindu
Ishanka 31, Sampath Perera 22, Chathura Randunu
6/94, Susantha Pradeep 3/25)
Antonians SC 89-4 contd 140 (43.4) (Dinesh
Nilanga 20, Chathura Randunu 23, Umega
Chathuranga 7/53) and 19-3 (10.2) (Umega
|Book launch today
Veteran sports journalist Ranjan Paranavithana will
launch his book “The Triumph” at the National
Olympic Committee Auditorium today at 5 pm.
The book is an English translation of
‘Vijayagrahanaya’ which depicts Sri Lanka’s glorious
World Cup victory of 1996.
facilities in 9 provinces
of Sports, Mahindananda Aluthgamage, advised that
the Sports Ministry plans to provide the best of
modern sports facilities in all nine provinces to
enable our sportsmen and women to compete at
international level. He requested sports officials
to identify and train talented youth to enable them
to reach their full potential within the next five
to seven years.
The Ministry is to initiate a seven-year plan to
uplift the standard of sports with a view to enable
our athletes to make a good impression at the 2018
Commonwealth Games for which Sri Lanka is also
making a bid to be the host country.
The sports complexes will have state-of-the-art
400-metre tracks, cricket grounds, swimming pools,
conference halls and hostel facilities. According to
a Sport Ministry news release the first stage of
this project will take off with construction of
sports stadia commencing in Badulla, Anuradhapura
|77th Mahagastota Hill Climb on
The 77th Mahagastota Speed Hill Climb organised
by the oldest club in the country the Ceylon Motor
Sports Club will be held on April 10.
Entries are open for the meet and can be obtained
from the club office at Jinasena Ltd, No. 176/1,
Thimbirigasyaya Road, Colombo 2 or from the club