Afif and Binura pilot Jaffna Kings to victory

Binura Fernando who took 3 for 20 celebrating a wicket (Pic by SLC)

Afif Hossain hit a superb knock of 53 in 35 balls while paceman Binura Fernando finished with impressive figures of 3 for 20 as Jaffna Kings recorded a 16-run win over Galle Gladiators in their LPL cricket fixture played at the R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium yesterday.

Galle Gladiators led by Kusal Mendis chasing a target of 171 could manage only 154 for 9 wickets and Jaffna Kings celebrated their fifth victory of the tournament as they once again head into the final.

Afif Hossain the Bangladesh all-rounder who made his debut LPL game replacing injured West Indian Tom Kohler Cadmore at last moment played a good innings as a number three batter smashing five fours and six to his 35-ball innings. The left hander Hossain added 56 runs in a third-wicket stand with Sadeera Samarawickrama who hit 32 in 28 balls while skipper Thisara Perera played his usual quick-fire knock of 26 in 13 balls with 4 fours to build up their total to 170 for 8 wickets which was a challenging score on this wicket.

Wahab Riaz the Pakistan paceman was the most successful bowler taking 3 for 37 while Nuwan Thushara played a good supporting role to picking up 2 for 31.

Galle Gladiators openers Kusal Mendis and Thanuka Dabare were unable to give a good start and Dabare was the first to go scoring 2 runs in 4 balls with Binura Fernando doing the early damage. However experienced Kusal Mendis anchored the innings by scoring an excellent knock of 58 in 45 balls with 7 fours and a six but that was in vain as they ended up on the losing side.

Binura Fernando the left arm medium paceman bowled with lot of fire ably supported by James Fuller and Vijayakanth Viyaskanth who took two wickets each.

Chief scores

Jaffna Kings 170 for 8 wickets in 20 overs Rahmanullah Gurbaz 23,Avishka Fernando 18,Afif Hossain 53,Sadeera Samarawickrama 32,Thisara Perera 26,Nuwan Thushara 2/31,Wahab Riaz 3/37,Nuwan Pradeep 1/32

Galle Gladiators 154 for 9 wickets in 20 overs Kusal Mendis 58, Nuwanindu Fernando 22,Ifthikar Ahmed 23,Imad Wasim 14, Wahab Riaz 13, Binura Fernando 3/20,Maheesh Theekshana 1/18,James Fuller 2/57,Vijayakanth Viyaskanth 2/27.