Thu, 18 Jul 2024

Table leaders Jaffna Kings face Kandy Falcons tomorrow

By M. Shamil Amit reporting from Dambulla

(Daily Mirror) - Two key matches of the fifth Lanka Premier League (LPL) T20 Cricket Tournament will be played tomorrow (09) with the table leaders Jaffna Kings meeting the wooden spoonists Kandy Falcons at 3.00 p.m. and Galle Marvels - occupying second spot - confronting fourth placed Dambulla Sixers at 7.30 p.m.

Looking at the performances of the two teams so far, the scale is much in favour of the Jaffna Kings - led by Charith Asalanka - having chalked up three wins and suffered just one defeat.

They began their campaign with a defeat to Galle Marvels but came back with a vengeance to record three wins on the trot against Dambulla Sixers, Galle Marvels in the second match and once again against the Dambulla Sixers to take the top slot on a better run rate.

Jaffna Kings have so far, made the highest score of the tournament of 218 for five against the Dambulla Sixers.

On the other hand, the defending champions Kandy Falcons - led by Wanindu Hasaranga - have not been able to make much headway although they began the tournament on a winning note - they have suffered three defeats in-a-row to Colombo Strikers twice and Galle Marvels.

With the two teams having experienced players Jaffna Kings will depend on Avishka Fernando - who is the top batsmen of the tournament so far with 210 runs inclusive of three half centuries - Pathum Nissanka and Skipper Asalanka - who have been their mainstay.

Kandy Falcons will bank on Andre Fletcher, Angelo Mathews and Dinesh Chandimal to guide them.

Meanwhile, second placed Galle Marvels led by Niroshan Dickwella has the edge over fourth placed Dambulla Sixers - led by Mohammad Nabi as they have chalked up three wins against Jaffna Kings, Colombo Strikers and Kandy Falcons and have suffered one defeat to Jaffna Kings.

Dambulla Sixers on the other hand are having a tough time as they have suffered three straight defeats before pulling off their first win against the Colombo Strikers in the last match that they played.

The two teams possess the two centurions of the tournament - Tim Seifert of Galle Marvels and Kusal Perera of Dambulla Sixers.

Galle Marvels will look for Seifert - who is the second top scorer just behind Avishka with 208 runs - and will expect Alex Hales, Reeza Hendricks and Skipper Dickwella for support.

Dambulla Sixers’ trump card will be Kusal Perera with 198 runs and the third top scorer of the tournament will be the player to take note of and much will be expected from Mark Chapman, Janith Liyanage and the hard-hitter Isuru Udana if they are to make any impression. 

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