Lahiru Udara struck an unbeaten timely Player of the Match 45 off 35 balls as Galle Gladiators defeated Colombo Stars by 25 runs in the seventh match of the Lanka Premier League 2022 at the Pallekelle International Cricket Stadium on Sunday. The outcome was never in doubt after Colombo Stars frontline once again wilted as in the previous game losing skipper Angelo Mathews for 9, Karim Jat for a duck, Navod Paranavithana 3 and Charith Asalanka 5 in a similarity to the one against Dambulla Aura. In both games opening batsman Niroshan Dickwella proved to be the side’s guiding light with rousing half centuries. Only this time around his 58 off 48 could not lift the Stars as he did against Dambulla with the top order let down having its dire effect in the Stars being tripped up. Indeed Colombo Stars failed to shine finishing on 149 for 7 off 20 in reply to the Galle Gladiators 174 for 7 off 20.
In that strutting the explosive wicket-keeper batsman, who struck 8 boundaries, had to be content along with his English colleague Ravi Bopara who was the only other Star in that futile run chase stroking a defiant 46 off 36.
The Galle Gladiators in putting behind defeat in the tournament, was on song batting first on a 75-run opening partnership between skipper Kusal Mendis and Thanuka Dabare who made identical scores of 36 with the hard hitting young prodigy Nuwanidu Fernando adding a 16-ball 29-run flourish packed with 2 over the top and three to the ropes.
CHIEF SCORES: Galle Gladiators 174/6 (20 Overs) (Lahiru Udara n.o. 45, Kusal Mendis 36, Thanuka Dabare 36, Nuwanidu Fernando 29, Jeffrey Vandersay 2/31, Ravi Bopara 1/4, Navod Paranavithana 1/28, Dominic Drakes 1/32, Naveen-ul-Haq 1/41) Colombo Stars 149/7 (20 Overs) (Niroshan DickwellaDin 58,.Ravin Bopara n.o. 46, Dinesh Chandimal 16. Ifthikar Ahmed 2/12. Wahab Riaz 2/21, Nuwan Pradeep 2/52, Nuwan Thushara 1/23)