Galle Gladiators beat Dambulla Giants with 9 runs in a rain-limited match


Colombo, 15th Premadasa Stadium here.

The game, which was reduced to 14 overs due to rain, saw Dambulla Giants captain Dasun Shanaka win on Tuesday night. The gladiators got a strong start from Danushka Gunathilaka and Kusal Mendis who added 30 runs in 2.5 overs for the opening stand.

The gladiators' innings were supported by Kusal Mendis, who made 35 balls out of 17, hitting four limits and a six, while skipper Bhanuka Rajapaksa hit 33 out of 20, driven by three sixes and a four in his innings.

But the middle order of gladiators struggled when veteran Proteas spinner Imran Tahir picked up three wickets for 20 runs while Joshua Little took 2/29 as they limited gladiators to 134/7 in 14 overs.

In the hunt for the grand, the Giants lost Niroshan Dickwella for a duck on the third ball, but the 90-run stand between Philip Salt and Janith Liyanage turned the tide in their favor and it looked like Gladiators could make their third loss suffer in a row.

But Salt was sacked by Isuru Udana for 41 on the 11th round, and shortly afterwards Samit Patel sent both Liyanage and Skipper Shanaka back to the hut for 1, and the game switched again.

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Despite the late hit from Najibullah Zadran, who hit two sixes to score 16 runs in nine balls, the Giants missed by nine runs to score 125/5 in 14 overs, and Gladiators won the match by two crucial points achieve.

Short results: Galle Gladiators 134/7 in 14 overs (Kusal Mendis 35, Bhanuka Rajapaksa 33; Imran Tahir 3/20) bt Dambulla Giants 125/5 in 14 overs (Phil Salt 41, Janith Liyanage 51; Samit Patel 2/24).