Under-19s go two down
England Under-19s fell to their second defeat in three days as they were heavily beaten by their Sri Lankan counterparts, who took a 2-0 lead in the five-match series at Colts Cricket Club Ground.
The hosts set a commanding total of 325 for six from their 50 overs, with Dhananjaya de Silva the pick of their batsman with a quickfire 79 from 59 deliveries, including 10 fours and a six.
Wickets regularly undermined the tourists’ run chase and although Ateeq Javid made 61 runs, they lost by a comfortable margin of 137 runs. Left-arm spinner Amila Aponso shone with the ball for Sri Lanka with four wickets.
Openers Shehan Jayasuriya and Ramith Rambukwella both hit half-centuries in an opening stand of 100 to set the tone for the Sri Lanka innings.
Rambukwella, in particular, was industrious as he smashed 66 from just 39 balls before he was removed by Lewis Gregory.
Jayasuriya and new batsman Bhanuka Rajapaksa, who hit 71 and 42 respectively, continued to add runs at a healthy rate before three quick wickets gave England a chance of reducing the hosts to a reachable total.
However, De Silva steadied the Sri Lankan ship and was ably supported by cameos from Angelo Jayasinghe and Lasith Abeyratne.
England never got going in their run chase and although Daniel Bell-Drummond attacked from the off, hitting 17 from 14 balls, he and fellow opener Sam Wood were dismissed cheaply by Rajapaksa.
Rammy Singh and Gregory looked to rebuild the innings, but the latter was Aponso’s first victim when he was trapped lbw in the 15th over.
Singh was removed 10 deliveries later for 25 when he was ran out by Sanitha de Mel’s to leave England reeling on 73 for four.
Although Javid was able to anchor the innings with his 64-ball knock, which featured four boundaries and two maximums, he did not have any support from the lower order.
Ben Foakes, Adam Ball and Shiv Thakor went without making valuable contributions and the writing was on the wall when Javid was the next to go.
Aponso claimed the final two wickets to finish with figures of 4-25 as England were bowled out for 188 from 40.4 overs.