Kandy inched closer to cup glory having dismissed Jaffna for 227 for a 169-run overall lead by closing the penultimate third day on 52 for 1 in the finals of Sri Lanka Cricket’s mega National Super League Tournament yesterday. (2) Kandy’s bowlers spearheaded by spin prodigy Lasith Embuldeniya’s 4 for 100 and Ashen Daniel’s 3 for 89 with seamer Asitha, Fernando firing 2 for 25 got on top in denting Jaffna’s first innings run chase of 444.
Jaffna floundered in converting the overnight score of 42 for 1 losing their big hope Samida Fernando cheaply. Nishan Madushka took his overnight score of 24 to 57 off 124 balls inclusive of 5 boundaries, but could not convert it to sizable proportions to hauling his side out of trouble. Skipper Dhananjaya de Silva fell attempting to hit his way out of trouble for a 33-ball 30 filled with 4 boundaries. The 21-year old all-rounder Dilum Sudeera remained defiant with an unbeaten 49 offers 88 hitting 8 boundaries. Jaffna’s resistance as it was did not go beyond Dunith Wellalage’s 19 and Geeth Kumara 16.
Kandy’s second innings response of 52,for the loss of Kamil Mishara’s wicket for 26 was further consolidating their grip to the cup spoils. With a sizable lead in the bag skipper Kamindu Mendis would be all buoyant on having the game in their grasp His batsmen will be after quick runs to set a 250-plus target to going for an outright win.
CHIEF SCORES: Kandy 444 and 52/1 (Kamil Mishara 26, Kasun Vidura n.o. 16, Oshada Fernando n.o. 9, Dilum Sudeera 1/13)
Jaffna 227 (Nishan Madushka 57, Dilum Sudeera n.o. 49, Dhananjaya de Silva 30, Dunith Wellalage 19, Geeth Kumara 16, Lasith Embuldeniya 4/100, Ashen Daniel 3/89, Asitha Fernando 2/25)