Nagenahira Nagas v Ruhuna Royals, SLPL, Colombo August 11, 2012

Nagenahira take rain-hit opener


Nagenahira Nagas 77 for 2 (Birt 33*, Jayasundera 25) beat Ruhuna Royals 134 (Thirimanne 34, Mendis 3-34, Eranga 3-15) by five runs (D/L method)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Nagenahira Nagas prevailed by five runs in a rain-curtailed SLPL curtain-raiser against Ruhuna Royals at the R Premadasa Stadium. Ruhuna stuttered to 134 all out from their 20 overs, as Shaminda Eranga and Ajantha Mendis claimed three wickets each. Nagenahira progressed steadily to 77 for 2 from 12 overs when the heavens opened up. No further play was possible and Nagenahira were declared the winners by the Duckworth/Lewis method.

There was no swing for Eranga in what was at one stage a sunny afternoon, but what he lacked in movement, he provided in intensity. The low bounce helped him skid through quicker than the batsmen expected, and he exploited this by bowling fast and straight. Daniel Harris lost his leg stump in an attempted charge and Lasith Malinga, who had promoted himself towards the end of the innings, did likewise - only his stroke was a heave to the leg side. Eranga had removed Chamara Silva as well, with an offcutter, and conceded only 15 runs from his four overs.

None of the Ruhuna batsmen found the measure of the sluggish surface, regularly mishitting slogs to the infield - if they managed to connect at all. Aaron Finch and Prasanna Jayawardene managed only two runs from the first two overs, but when the runs eventually began to flow, the wickets began to fall as well. Mendis leaked 10 runs in a wayward first over, but amid the filth, produced a moment of magic to produce Nagenahira's first breakthrough. Finch's bewildered prod was nowhere near the carrom ball that uprooted his off stump, and Ruhuna would continue to lose batsmen regularly, failing to produce partnerships of note.

With a modest total to chase, Nagenahira were unflustered throughout their reply, even when Tharanga Lakshitha dismissed Ahmed Shehzad for a duck in the second over. Travis Birt's 33 from 38 laid the foundation for Nagenahira, who, with their captain Angelo Mathews in the middle, appeared to be charting a measured course to victory when weather intervened.

Andrew Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's correspondent in Sri Lanka

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ranesh on August 12, 2012, 10:48 GMT

    Well Done Nagas!! Go ahead!! BTW Y Cricinfo z nt uploading photos of these matches.. Hope u hv cameramen there at RPS, pls upload photos.. Without photos its not complete.. Regards//

  • Prashan on August 12, 2012, 9:32 GMT

    @jackthelad exactly right but Pallekelle was fine. Hambantota was the worse blunder.

  • Dummy4 on August 12, 2012, 8:02 GMT

    I was happy to see Aja & Era bowling performances...well done Aja, u will be a one of great spinner in T20 world cup this year...

  • Robert on August 12, 2012, 7:13 GMT

    Udendra - no DRS because the SL Cricket Authority can't pay for it, due to lunatic spending on two white elephant new stadiums - they are so deep in debt they had to get the Bank of Ceylon to bail them out just so they could pay national cricketers' outstanding salaries.

  • Prashan on August 12, 2012, 3:44 GMT

    @Yasintha Lakmal Rajawansha, our population is 21 million and many people follow cricket in Sri Lanka. So we do have millions of cricket fans bro. So I disagree with you.

  • Sohrab on August 11, 2012, 19:28 GMT

    if u keep playing games in neutral venues...dont expect packed stadiums....because everyone will find it pointless to pay to watch neutral games when they can watch them on tv for free...

  • Dummy4 on August 11, 2012, 19:07 GMT

    wonderfull slpl..brilliant

  • Dummy4 on August 11, 2012, 18:13 GMT

    @ EnglishCricket : a bit of sarcasm in your comment mate. Let's enjoy cricket.This is a small island.We don't have millions of cricket fans,like in India.Also this is the curtain-raiser.Let's see......

  • udendra on August 11, 2012, 17:35 GMT

    why no DRS in SLPL? some umpiring decisions were ridiculous. btw, two good games despite rain.

  • Dummy4 on August 11, 2012, 15:40 GMT

    Thanks for nice Report,SLPL will be interesting with next games,

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