83rd Battle of the Saints : Jehan Daniel (124 n.o.) is Joes saviour
Indika Welagedara – Courtesy: Daily News.
Jehan Daniel exults after scoring a face-saving century for St Joseph’s College on the first day of the Battle of the Saints cricket match against St Peter’s College at the P Sara Oval yesterday. Pic by Thilak Perera
Sri Lanka under 19 cricketer Jehan Daniel played the role of savior to rescue St Joseph’s College from dire straits at 10 for 5 to a respectable 205 on the opening day of the 83rd Battle of the Saints encounter against St Peter’s College at the P Sara Oval yesterday.
By the close the game was evenly poised with St Peter’s replying with 138 for five wickets.
Daniel’s magnificent century saved St. Joseph’s the blushes and enabled them to take the upper hand.
Daniel came to the crease with his side tottering at 10 for 5 after skipper Harin Cooray had won the toss and elected to bat first. However in the first session’s play things go the way the Joes would have planned.
Under 19 player cum Peterite vice-captain and right arm fast bowler Manelker de Silva and his new ball partner Santhush Gunathilake combined together to rip through the batting line up.
Gunathilake ran through the Joes top order by making the early breakthrough in his first two overs when he dismissed openers Cameron Duruge and took the prize wicket of Nipun Sumanasinghe who has scored 1000 runs this season.
Manelker De Silva added salt to the wound of the Josephians when he got rid of Dineth Madurawela for one as St. Joseph’s slid to 3 for 3.
To make matters worse for the Joes both Thashan Perera and Havin Perera were run out due to brilliant fielding and half the Joes side was out for 10.
A sixth wicket partnership of 56 between Daniel and wicket keeper Shevan Fonseka (26) addressed the slump. The stand was ended with another run out of Fonseka following a direct throw from Ranmith Jayasena, son of Panadura SC cricketer Mangala Jayasena.
Daniel and Jehan Fernandopulle son of former Benedictine cricketer Marlon Fernandopulle took the score to 95 before Jehan was run out for 14 by Manelker de Silva’s brilliant fielding.
Daniel counter attacked making use of three dropped chances to score an unbeaten 124 off 116 balls that included 12 boundaries and five sixes. He was involved in a face saving partnership of 93 runs for the eighth wicket with left hander Pahan Perera (25) that saw St. Joseph’s to their final total.
The eighth wicket partnership between the pair broke a 67-year old record for St. Joseph’s of 66 between Adolphus Silva and Milroy Brohier in 1950.
For the Peterites who batted after tea Shalith Fernando their number four batsman hit a fine 47 before being dismissed in the penultimate over of the day. However vice-captain Manelker de Silva hung around for a solid unbeaten 40 by the close.