Eighteen year old opening batsman Shevon Daniel unleashed the innings of his life – a blitzkrieg 80 off 55 balls powered by 5 sixes and equal number of boundaries in Dambulla Aura’s 48-run win over Galle Gladiators, but was quite unlucky not to have got the nod for the Player of the Match award which went to his opening partner Jordan Cox who struck 77 off 58 inclusive of 6 boundaries and 3 sixes where his two catches behind the stumps influenced the adjudicators to give it to the Englishman as the third leg of the Lanka Premier League 2022 shifted to the Colombo metropolis in the 15th D/N at the R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium on Saturday. Daniel, yet in the rookie freshness of a schoolboy cricketer, combined with the 22-year old Cox, who joined Kent at the age of 10 and guided the side to the county championship title for the first time in a generation, in strutting together a record 163 for the first wicket off 17 overs in a total of 178 for 5 off 20 overs as Dambulla lost 5 wickets for 15 runs. The wickets to fall included Bhanuka Rajapaksa and Sikandar Raza for ducks and skipper Dasun Shanaka for 10.
Galle Gladiators folded up for 130 off 19.4 overs with the much talked of medium pacie Pramod Madushan taking 3 for 17 and Sikandar Raza 2 for 5. Gladiators skipper Kusal Mendis was taken out by his opposite number Dasun Shanaka for a first ball duck caught by Pramod Madushan while his opening partner Thanuka Dabare was sent back by Madushan for 4 caught by Shevon Daniel as the Gladiators lost two wickets in 7 balls. The only worthwhile contributions came from Lahiru 32 and Asad Shafiq 28.
CHIEF SCORES: Dambulla Aura 178/5 (20 Overs) (Shevon Daniel 80, Jordan Cox 77, Dasun Shanaka 12, Nuwan Pradeep 3/37, Nuwan Thushara 1/29) Galle Gladiators 130 (19.4 Overs) (Lahiru Udara 32, Asad Shafiq 28, Nuwan Pradeep 10, Pramod Madushan 3/17, Sikandar Raza 2/5, Noor Ahmad 1/17, Matthew Forde 1/23, Dilum Sudeera 1/35)