Special Sports Correspondent in Kandy
Arjuna Ranatunga plays his trademark pull shot during yesterday’s play at Olcott Memorial Cricket in Pallekele.
It will be Old Anandians against Old Mahindians, and Old Palians versus Old Rahulians in the semi-finals of the prestigious Olcott Memorial Cricket Tournament at the Pallekele Stadium today.
The Arjuna Ranatunga inspired Old Anandian team pipped the Old Sokians by two runs. Thusira de Silva, the Ranatungas and Viani Pieris (4-7) played stellar roles as the former edged through.
The Old Mahindians – Old Nalandians game was a virtual no contest, after Hirantha Wijesinghe, Asela Wewelwala and the Wickremasinghes (Diliepa and Duminda) put sufficient runs on the board.
Gamini Perera produced the day’s best all round effort with 28 (3 sixes) and 4-13 to steer the Old Palians to a close four runs win. Ajith Ekanayake (22 and 3-9) almost emulated the efforts of Perera.
The old Rajans disappointed their home fans with a poor batting display. Pradeep Heenkende threw them a life-line with a blistering innings of 37 that contained four sixes. But Priyantha Uyanahewa and Asoka Sirimanne dismissed their challenge with ease, rushing to the 69-run target in only 6-3 overs. Neither run nor gloomy light seemed to deter the swashbuckling openers.
Old Anandians 76-8 (Thusira de Silva 20, Arjuna Ranatunga 18, Sanjeeva Ranatunga 13; T. Wasantha 3-4, Lal Ranasinghe 1-10) beat Old Sokians 74-9 (Janaka Kumudu 15, Wasantha Kumara 12, Lal Ranasinghe 15 n.o.; Viani Pieris 4-7, Sanjeeva Ranatunga 2-13)
Old Mahindians 119-1 (Hirantha Wijesinghe 44 retd., Asela Wewelwala 30 n.o., Diliepa Wickremasinghe 22, Duminda Wickremasinghe 21 n.o.; C. Vithane 1-19) beat Old Nalandians 78 (Hemantha Devapriya 14, Mahendra Amarasinghe 15, Sampath Hettiarachchi 13, Imal Boteju 12; J. D. Janaka 3-10, Hirantha Wijesinghe 3-22, Wasantha Kumara 2-12)
Old Dharmapalians 76 (Gamini Perera 28, Ajith Wasantha 15; Ajith Ekanayake 3-9, Udeni Senarathne 2-13, Vinod Samarawickrema 3-21) beat Old Devans 72 (Ajith Ekanayake 22, Sudarshan Guruge 10, Gamini Perera 4-13, Nihal Zoysa 3-11)
Old Rahulians 69-0 (Asloka Sirimanne 38 n.o., Priyantha Uyanahewa 21 n.o.) beat Old Rajans (Thanuka Godewatte 10 n.o.; Priyantha Uyanahewa 3-5).