By Madushka Balasuriya
The Colombo Commandos and the Galle Guardians will meet in the Super T20 Provincial Tournament final tomorrow after they beat the Hambantota Troopers and Kurunegala Warriors in their respective semi-finals yesterday.
The day’s first semi saw the Commandos take on the Troopers. The corresponding fixture in the round robin stage had seen the Troopers ease to a 6-wicket victory, however this time around the Commandos returned the favour, as a blistering 72 from Niroshan Dickwella saw them power to a 6 wicket win. Chasing 165 to win, Dickwella’s 38-ball knock set the platform for a comfortable chase, while Ramith Rambukwella’s 6-ball 22 sealed a comprehensive win in just 16 overs.
Earlier, having been put in to bat, Seekkuge Prasanna (52) and Tillakaratne Dilshan (44) had given the Troopers the perfect start. The duo put on 90 for the first wicket off 10 overs, laying the groundwork for a mammoth total. However, following the dismissal of the two, Commando’s fast-bowling pair Shaminda Eranga (4-0-36-3) and Kasun Rajitha (4-0-25-3) returned to turn up the pressure and restrict the Troopers to 164 all out, a total that eventually proved to be too little as the Commandos made their way in to the final.
In the evening fixture the Galle Guardians took on the Kurunegala Warriors but, just as in their round robin encounter, the Guardians prevailed comfortably, this time by 6 wickets. The impressive off-spin of Suraj Randiv was once again the highlight for the Guardians as he went for just 12 runs in his four overs picking up three wickets in the process. And a bowling attack that also Dushmantha Chameera, Ajantha Mendis and Jeffrey Vandersay, proved too much for the Warriors as they stumbled to 121 all out in their 20 overs.
The low score, and subsequent low required run rate, meant that the Guardians were never under any real pressure and eased to their target in 17.2 overs. Udara Jayasundera top scored with 35, while Captain Dinesh Chandimal was unfortunate to be run out for 28 when the finish line was in sight.
Today will be the final rest day of the tournament before the final tomorrow. The final, which will be televised, will take place at 7 tomorrow evening at the R. Premadasa Stadium.