Colombo Strikers Prevail in high-Scoring Thriller Against Kandy Falcons

DAMBULLA: Glenn Phillips’ blistering half-century, followed by Matheesha Pathirana’s four-fer led Colombo Strikers to prevail in high-scoring Lanka Premier League (LPL) 2024 thriller against Kandy Falcons.

The Falcons, while chasing a daunting 200-run target, came in touching distance when Angelo Mathews hit Thisara Perera for three consecutive boundaries in the final over.

With the Falcons needing three off the last delivery, Perera held his nerves calm, bowled a perfect yorker in the block hole, and ran out Mathews at the non-striker’s end to steer the Strikers to glory.

The defending champions, at one point, were on course to chase down the total when Mohammad Haris and Andre Fletcher knitted a magnificent partnership for the second wicket.

The duo added 95 runs for the second wicket before Shadab Khan dismissed the West Indian batter to open the floodgates.

Fletcher fell narrowly short of his well-deserved century as he scored 47 off 36 deliveries with the help of five fours and two sixes.

Matheesha Pathirana further dented the Falcons’ run-chase by getting rid of their batting mainstay Mohammad Haris in the next over.

Haris remained the top-scorer for the Falcons with a 32-ball 56, peppered with five fours and four sixes.

Unfazed by the departure of both set batters, Kamindu Mendis played a blazing cameo to keep the hopes intact.

He put together a one-sided 41-run partnership with Mathews for the fourth wicket before Pathirana struck again to send him back.

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Mendis smashed two fours and four sixes on his way to a 16-ball 46.

His dismissal was followed by three more blows in quick succession as the Strikers slipped to 180/7 in 19.5 overs.

Veteran all-rounder Mathews then attempted to turn the tide in the Falcons’ favour but fell short. He scored a 14-ball 33.

Pathirana led the bowling charge for the Strikers with 4/26 in his four overs while Shadab Khan, Perera and Taskin Ahmed chipped in with a wicket each.

Put into bat first, the Marvels registered a massive total of 199/9 on the board in their allotted overs.

Leading the way was right-handed batter Glenn Phillips, who dominated the Falcons bowlers and struck a magnificent half-century.

The New Zealand international smashed six fours and three sixes on his way to a 43-ball 70.

Besides him, openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz (20) and Angelo Perera (38) made significant contributions.

Dushmantha Chameera claimed three wickets for the Falcons while Wanindu Hasaranga and Shoriful Islam took two each.

The two-run victory propelled Colombo Strikers to the summit of the LPL 2024 standings with four points in three matches while Kandy Falcons remained fourth with two points in as many matches.

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