Soggy end to 136th Battle of the Blues


by Reemus Fernando

Man of the match of the 136th Battle of the Blues, Ravindu Kodituwakku of S. Thomas’ is presented with his award by Royal College Principal Upali Gunasekara while S. Thomas’ Warden Rev. Marc Billimoria, looks on.
(Pic by Kamal Wanniarachchi)

Thomian dominance continued to the final day and rain played spoil sport for a second consecutive day as the 136th Battle of the Blues ended in a tame draw at a waterlogged SSC Ground in Colombo on Saturday.

Royal were 19 for one wicket in the second innings, still trailing by 52 runs at lunch, when rain interrupted proceedings. No play was possible after lunch due to rain and the match was called off at 3 p.m.

Thomians dominated morning’s proceedings when they took the first innings lead without the overnight batsmen Ravindu Kodituwakku and Nipuna Gamage being parted. They extended the second wicket partnership to 100 runs before run-outs accounted for both of them in quick succession. Both batsmen missed important personal milestones by close margins and Kodituwakku’s was probably the most painful one as he missed a well deserving century by five runs.

Gamage was the first to depart being run out for 48 runs. He faced 78 balls and scored seven fours in his knock.

The former Prince of Wales College batsman Kodituwakku was batting for a third consecutive day having commenced the Thomian innings on Thursday afternoon. He was unbeaten on 88 runs when the second day’s play was curtailed due to rain on Friday. The left-hander could add only seven runs to the total as he was run out on 95. He faced 236 balls and scored 11 fours in his knock.

Chenutha Wickramasinghe, with a run-a-ball 28 runs, and Tharindu Ratnayake, with quick 15 runs, helped them extend the lead. While Wickramasinghe was bowled for 28 runs by Chamika Karunaratne, Ratnayake, Sachitha Jayathilaka (01 run) and Helakamal Nanayakkara (01 run) all perished against Randev Pathirana’s off-spinners. Pathirana was the pick of the bowlers for Royal.

In their second essay Royal were off to a disastrous start as they lost their opennig batsman Hasitha Samarasinghe for a naught.


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