Team ef­fort guides dra­matic win for hosts

Sunday Times (Sri Lanka) - - SPORTS - By Lak­sh­man Ranas­inghe

Sri Lanka reg­is­tered a dra­matic three wicket win with two balls to spare in the three day Youth Test be­tween Sri Lanka Un­der 19 and Aus­tralia Un­der 19 at the SSC grounds yes­ter­day.

Chas­ing a tar­get of 112 in 20 overs, Sri Lanka youth play­ers reached the tar­get with ease erupt­ing wild cel­e­bra­tions among the team mem­bers. This was a ma­jor turn-around for the Lankan play­ers who con­ceded the three-match lim­ited over se­ries 2-1.

In re­ply to Aussies to­tal of 269, con­tin­u­ing from their overnight score of 287 for seven, Sri Lanka closed their in­nings at 309 for the loss of eight wick­ets. Ear­lier Kamil Mishara top scored with a fight­ing 105 in­clud­ing fif­teen hits to the ropes. Thavee­sha Ab­hishek (36), Mo­homed Sa­maz (43), Nipun Dhanan­jaya (20), San­dun Mendis (22) and Chamindu Wi­jesinghe (39) were the main con­trib­u­tors for Sri Lanka in the first in­nings to­tal.

Aus­tralia bat­ting for the sec­ond time be­fore lunch were in trou­ble with four wick­ets down for 41 runs. Later when they were in fur­ther trou­ble with 69 for 7 wick­ets, were pulled out of trou­ble by Tanveer Sangha ( 25) and Jer­rod Free­man (52 n.o.) put­ting on 64 for the 8th wicket. Young Aus­tralians were again trou­bled by left arm spin­ner Ro­han San­jaya (31-16-37-4) and off spin­ner San­dun Mendis (18.4-4-56-4) and were dis­missed for 151 off 73 overs. San­jaya en­joyed a mem­o­rable match with a match bag of 9 for 131 who had a big hand in this ex­cit­ing win.

Chas­ing a victory tar­get of 112 Sri Lanka started off on the wrong foot los­ing opener Thavee­sha Ab­hishek off the sec­ond ball off Zak Evens. Lankans found them­selves in fur­ther trou­ble with the score­board read­ing 4 for 48. The game swung in Sri Lankan's way when Chamindu Wi­jesinghe scored 16 runs in the 16th over. With the exit of skip­per Dhana­jaya for 35 in the 17th over with the score at 95 end­ing a match win­ning part­ner­ship of 46 runs.

Ex­cel­lent run­ning be­tween the wick­ets by Wi­jesinghe and Mendis up­set the Australian field set­tings and with the score at 103 for 6 in the 18th over Wi­jesinghe was dis­missed. With the exit of Chi­lan Kalindu at 108 for 7, in the 19th over, Mendis, with an el­e­gant cover drive fin­ished off the match with a victory for Sri Lanka Un­der 19s.

Australian pace­man Zak Evens bowled un­changed claimed seven wick­ets for 6 for 44.


Sri Lanka Un­der-19s with the win­ning tro­phy, a win spear­headed by left-arm spin­ner Ro­han San­jaya, who ended with a match bag of nine scalps

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