Gihan Danushka and Rashen Kavinda of Mahinda College saved the day for the Mahindians at the 111th Lovers’ Quarrel cricket encounter against Richmond College, which ended in a tame draw.
The strong bowling side of Richmond was not enough to take the Mahindian batsmen out and affect a victory. On the first day Richmond limited the opponent for just 121 runs and they started to chase down the target of 121.At the end of the day Richmond scored 96 for the loss of 3 wickets on day one stumps Richmond started their innings on the second day on a positive note with no pressure whatsoever from the opposition.
Mahinda fielding let them down badly and the dropped catch of Pasindu Bimsara helped him to score 43 runs. Continuous fielding mistakes helped Richmond reach 221 in just 37 overs with a lead of 100. Richmond batsmen were piling on the runs quickly in order to get a score on the board and insert Mahinda into bat to conquer the trophy for the 3rd time.
To this score under 19 national team player Wanidu Hasaranga added 42 runs and chief scorer Pasindu Bimsara was out caught behind.
Mahinda came into bat and were immediately on the back foot with the fall of two early wickets for just 11 runs sending the Richmond stands in to rapture. But 13 year old Navod Paranavithana subdued the Richmond stands for some time with his patient playing. Just as he held on in the first innings, he made a nuisance of himself to the opposition scoring just 2 runs from 62 balls till Charith Asalanka’s off spin undid him becoming an overnight hero for the Mahinda camp. After his departure the Mahinda College wickets started to fall down continuously, turning the match Richmonds way. Two wickets in quick succession had Mahinda struggling.
But after tea Gihan Dhanushka and Reshan Kavinda settled themselves to save the game. Coming up against Sri Lanka U 19 bowlers they held on heroically, batting an entire session to see Mahinda home.
Avindu Theekshana of Richmond removed Gihan Dhanushka, but it was all too late. Reshan Kavinda scored his half century and raised his bat to Mahindian stands with two balls left in the game. It was as if Mahinda had won the game as it ended with a sea of supported crowding the grounds which had to eventually be cleared by the police.
Mahinda College – 1st innings 121/10(75 overs) Vinura Dulsara 35(4*5), Navod Paranavithana 28 (4*5), Avindu Theekshana 4/44(20 overs), Charith Asalanka 2/38(21 overs)
& 138/6(77 overs) Reshan Kavinda 50 (4*6), Gihan Dhanushka 41(4*3), Wanidu Hasaranga 2/47(22 overs)
Richmond College 221/7d(37 overs) Pasindu Bimsara 43(4*1), Wanidu Hasaranga 42(4*3), Asanka Lakshan 4/53(10 overs)