The spin trio of Samit Patel, Mohammad Hafiz and Pulina Tharanga together shared seven wickets between them to give the Galle Gladiators a flying start guiding them to a convincing 54-run win over Jaffna Kings in the first match of the Lanka Premier League 2021 played at the R. Premadasa Stadium on Sunday (5).
Patel ended with impressive figures of 3 for 21 with Hafeez and Pulina two each for 11 and 13 runs respectively which helped Galle Gladiators to bowl out Jaffna Kings, chasing a target of 165 runs, to a score of 110.
Jaffna Kings in pursuit of the target was in a spot of bother with Patel and Hafeez doing the early damage to have them struggling on 56 for 4 at the halfway stage of the innings.
Only Wahab Riaz was able to put in some resistance which was not going to be sufficient as the late order batting failed to make any impression.
Earlier Galle Gladiators last year’s finalist invited to take first lease of the wicket started off with a boundary in the first ball and another two balls later off pacie Suranga Lakmal who succeeded to dislodge him in the fourth ball.
Kusal Mendis joined by Hafeez steadied the innings but was dealt a double blow with both departing in quick succession. However, skipper Bhanuka Rajapakse along with Ben Dunk came to the rescue of the side with the duo frustrating the Jaffna Kings bowlers with skipper Thisara Perera being punished for 14 runs in his first over with Rajapakse