Nagenahira v Wayamba, SLPL, Pallekele August 20, 2012

Jayawardene's 96 keeps Wayamba on top


Wayamba United 190 for 4 (Jayawardene 96*) beat Nagenahira Nagas 134 (A Perera 48*, Dananjaya 3-18) by 56 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

A breathtaking 96 off 50 deliveries from Mahela Jayawardene and another impressive turn by Akila Dananjaya saw Wayamba United establish themselves as the form side in the SLPL. Wayamba United amassed 190 for 4 before dismissing Nagenahira Nagas, the only other unbeaten side in the competition till today, for 134, in 19.5 overs. One more victory from their two remaining fixtures will guarantee Wayamba United a semi-final spot, but even if they lose, they will be difficult to displace from the top four.

The Nagas' reputation as the best attack in the tournament was dismantled almost poetically by Jayawardene in sumptuous form. Shaminda Eranga's final over cost 23, and he conceded 56 from his four. Ben Laughlin did little better, giving away 44 from his full quota.

Jayawardene began by punishing only the bad balls; a wide, overpitched delivery from Eranga was crashed over the covers, before two balls on leg stump were pushed firmly to the leg-side boundary. But eventually the improvisations came, and then even the good balls disappeared. An attempted yorker from Laughlin was scooped for six, Ajantha Mendis was charged and carted, and even when Eranga found the blockhole at the death, Jayawardene moved deep into the crease to manufacture length and swept the ball over square leg for six.

Jayawardene benefited from good fortune too, edging boundaries past the keeper and over leg stump, but the Nagas failed to take chances when they came, spilling four simple catches in eight balls as Wayamba United reaped 85 from the last six overs.

Dananjaya was playing his only fourth match outside school competition, but appears so much at ease that he could be taken for a veteran. He nabbed his best haul, taking 3 for 18 from four overs, and is making himself mighty difficult to leave out of the 15-man squad for the World Twenty20, due Friday at the latest.

The Nagas sparked in bursts during their reply, but were unable to sustain the sort of aggression that might have taken them close to their target. Travis Birt made a promising 25, before missing a straight one from Mohammad Hafeez, and the only other score of note was Angelo Perera's 39-ball 48, that was neither rapid nor substantial enough to compensate for a steady string of dismissals at the other end.

Andrew Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's correspondent in Sri Lanka

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on August 23, 2012, 15:41 GMT


  • Dummy4 on August 23, 2012, 11:36 GMT

    It is the right time to get Nasir in the 1st 11 . We all know, The second class Australian players (Birt,Lauflin....) in 2012 are not as same as the second class players (Mcgill,Katich,Hodge.......) of Aus in 1999-2007 . Their golden generation which ruled over all the countries is gone . So, it is better to overlook the players of other countries . I don't know what Nagenahira team management will do .

  • Dummy4 on August 23, 2012, 11:22 GMT

    It is the right time to get Nasir in the first eleven of Nagenahira . We all know that the second class players (Birt, Lauflin, Daniel Harris.....) of Australia in 2012 are not as same as the second class payers (Mcgill, Katich, Hodge......) of Australia in 1999 -2007 in quality & this fact is being proved day by day .Their golden generation which ruled over all countries is gone .So, it is better to overlook the players of other countries . Any way, I don't know what Nagenahira team management will do.

  • Sam on August 23, 2012, 8:58 GMT

    jayawardene is still the shining light of the sri lankan batting line up.

  • Lakmal on August 22, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    Akila is akila.He is not a Murali,mendis,Narine or Tiger o'reilly.Let the kid be his own.Don't give him high hopes.

  • Dummy4 on August 22, 2012, 7:51 GMT

    Kapu should get more chances in international cricket. Unfortunately he was getting very important matches like final/semi final/knockout last few years. How he can show his fine touch of willow with leather if he plays under pressure...Why can't selectors give him chances continuously like Chandimal, Thirimanne & Tharanga. Selectors should not measure talent of a player by putting him important match..if their plans that work then put Sanga, Dilshan, Malinga & Mahela only in final/semi/knockout. I'm sure they won't perform...

  • Shehan on August 21, 2012, 13:18 GMT

    I wish Cricinfo gave some space for the SLPL in their headlines also as they give for IPL..That'll be great for the cricket fans..

  • rikzy on August 21, 2012, 8:07 GMT

    thank you very much for ESPN CRICINFO's support providing us with live scores. Probably the best sports website in world... Mahela, Akila and AK perera's performances had been realy good... Mahela got his fifty in 36 balls and rest of his 46 runs in just 14 balls, played really well and if wayamba wins the tournament they will be able to to very well in champions league as well..akila has been excellent very suitabl for t20 cricket looks like another mendis or nirine...all in all good news for slc and AK PARERA promising to be a good finisher in sri lanka's odi and t20 fomats.

  • Randika on August 21, 2012, 8:01 GMT

    Wayamba matches should be played in Dambulla which is the only stadium with lights inthe province. maybe there'll be better support there. Kandy crowds always turn up in numbers and are among the most colorful in the world, and its nice to see Uva, a forgotten backwater in SL cricket drawing a lot of support. I cannot believe that Colombo will have better crowds but atleast a bigger crowd will do. Thsi tournament has certainly created a lot of awareness among the public and is a good boost to Sri Lanka cricket. Thank you to all the internationals who are playing mostly Pakistani, WIndies, New Zealanders and some Bangla, Aussie, SAF and Zim. No Indians don't make this any less of a tourny and hope it will grow into the provinces a bit more in the future! Revenue generated can self finance the stadium construction in Jaffna, Batticalo/Trinco/Ampara and Kurunegala which produces a host of national cricketers (few Internationals too) but lacking a modern stadium.

  • amila on August 21, 2012, 5:30 GMT

    what a knock by Mahela. This is good for SL and will boost the confidence when they face T20 world cup. The tournament with its short stay has already proven its worth to SL Cricket. Akila Dhanjaya is SL's next Murali.....

  • No featured comments at the moment.