Pace bowler Kasun Rajitha wrought havoc with a spellbinding 5 for 22 in bundling out Dambulla Aura for 89 runs as Colombo Stars swept to a 9-wicket win and the second in successive days with 51 balls to spare in Tuesday’s night encounter of the Lanka Premier League 2022 at the Pallekelle International Cricket Stadium. The Stars made short shrift of the 14th game with Charith Asalanka striking 58 off 35 powered by 4 sixes and 5 boundaries and Dinesh Chandimal a run a ball 31 inclusive of 3 boundaries in dealing with the first ball dismissal of Niroshan Dickwella by Pramod Madushan. The 29-year old Rajitha, who was discovered to the big stage in 2015 following a 5 for 68 against India in a three day warm up game clean bowled Lasith Croospulle first ball and trapped Shevon Daniel leg before wicket for a duck with the fifth ball as Dambulla lost both openers for 6. After Suranga Lakmal had sent back Bhanuka Rajapaksa for 4 caught by Chandimal, Rajitha took his third wicket clean bowling Tom Abell for a duck and proceeded to his fourth scalp that of Paul van Meekeren also for a duck 13 balls later after Jeffrey Vandersay had Dambulla skipper Dasun Shanaka caught by Howell for 20. By that stage Dambulla had lost 8 wickets for 55 in just 42 balls in that wrecking.
In the game’s fast moving short format of the game that had been hitherto dominated by batsmen, Rajitha descended in typical thunderbolt style of the bowling species to becoming the Star Player of the Match hero of the night.
CHIEF SCORES: Dambulla Aura 89 (13.5 Overs) Dasun Shanaka 20, Kasun Rajitha 5/22, Jeffrey Vandersay 2/10, Karim Janat 1/20, Suranga Lakmal 1/33) Colombo Stars 90/1 (11.3 Overs) (Charith Asalanka n.o. 58, Dinesh Chandimal n.o. 31, Pramod Madushan 1/3)