Bens - a force to be reckoned with
Posted by DARREL LUDOWYKE on February 10 2014 02:06:13
By Thushan Jayasuriya - (Daily News of 7th February 2014)
St.Benedict's College, Kotahena hopes to make their presence felt with a blend of youth and experience in the current inter-schools under 19 division one cricket tournament.

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By Thushan Jayasuriya - (Daily News of 7th February 2014)
St.Benedict's College, Kotahena hopes to make their presence felt with a blend of youth and experience in the current inter-schools under 19 division one cricket tournament.

Their first innings wins for the season were against St.Sebastian's College Moratuwa, Dharmaraja College Kandy, St.Servatius College Galle, St.Sylveter's College Kandy St.Anne's College Kurunegala and Royal Colombo. Last year they had the honour of ending runners-up in the inter-schools limited over cricket tournament.

Their chances of outright wins were washed out due to the inclement weather.

The Kotahena School has produced some outstanding cricketers of the calibre of Lionel Fernando, Nihal Soysa, Dr Cyril Ernest, Ranjan Gunatilleke and Ranjith Fernando. They have also produced some impressive club cricketers like Tony Appadurei, Kumar Ramanathan, Elmo Rodrigopulle (Both of whom played for the Board President's XI against visiting international teams), Sunil Fernando,Joe Saverimuttupulle, Malcolm Mack, Basil Perera, Nevin Noyahr and Lal Wickramatunga (who had the honour of being adjudged the best bowler in schools in 1970).

The Benedictines also produced a fine all rounder in Pradeep Hewage who captained the Sri Lanka Under 19 team in the Youth World Cup in South Africa in 1998.Gehan Perera who captained the School in 1978 was picked as the best bowler in the schools that year. Recently the Benedictines produced a fine all rounder in Jason Perera, who had an excellent season and looks a future national prospect.

This year the Benedictine first XI team will be captained by experienced all rounder and fourth year coloursman Yohan Soyza. For the the season he has scored more than 300 runs with a best individual score of S.Thomas' College, Mount Lavinia.

This elegant left arm leg spinner has captured 45 wickets with a best effort of 7 for 67 against St.Sebastian's College, Moratuwa.Apart from that he has taken five wicket hauls in six matches.

His deputy Shiran Ratnayake, who is playing his third year a solid top order batsman. Shiran who scored a total of 300 runs this season has displayed his batting prowess by cracking fine knocks against Dharmaraja College, Kandy(67) and S.Thomas' College Mount Lavinia(54).

Second year player spinner Geethika Jayatilleke also a valuable asset in the Benedictine bowling attack.Geethika has managed to take 42 wickets with a best effort of 8 for 32 against St.Anne's College, Kurunegala.

In addition, he has excelled with a matchbag of 11 wickets (6 for 52 and 5 for 17) against Dharmaraja College, Kandy.

Wicketkeeper batsman Janindu Karunatilleke is an extremely important player in the side.So far, he has claimed 42 victims. This stylish left hander batsman has scored over 325 runs with a two half tons against St.Sebastian's College, Moratuwa(67) and St.Sylvester's College Kandy(68).

Left hand opener Sithum Wijesinghe who is playing his third year is a source of inspiration to the Kotahena lads has strucked a total of more than 300 runs.

Another reliable player is fresher Sithum Wijesinghe, who is the opening bowler of the side with 30 and a seven wicket haul against St.Servatius' College, Matara.

In batting Sithum has passed 300 run mark with two half centuries against S.Thomas' Mount Lavinia.

The spin attack will be spearheaded by skipper Yohan Soyza, who will be ably supported by Geethika Jayatilleke, Harshana Kularatne, Vikith Perera and Ruvinda Niwunhella while the pace attack will be powered by Sithum Wijesinghe, Supun Lakmal and Poorna Charuka.

Their coach, former Thomian cricker N.I.C.Silva is taking great pains to mould the Benedictines into a champion outfit. He intends to form a talented side with a combination of seniors and freshers.

He will be assisted by Assistant Coach Shashika Maduranga and Master-In-Charge Vivian Saverymuthapulle.

The St.Benedicts College first XI squad

Yohan Soyza (Captain), Shiran Ratnayake (Vice Captain), Poorna Charuka, Darren Warne, Nimesh Fonseka, Janindu Karunatilleke, Vikith Perera, Mahel Jayalath, Geethika Jayatilleke, Ruvinda Niwunhella, Supun Lakmal, Sithum Wijesinghe, Madushan Kularatne, Thulina Dilshan and Thenuka Silva.

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