Kalpage (6/51) spins out Windies `A' for 220
By SA'ADI THAWFEEQ
Sri Lanka discard Ruwan Kalpage returned career-best figures of 6 for
51 to spin West Indies `A' out for 220 on the opening day of second
4-day unofficial cricket Test at the SSC grounds, Wednesday.
By the close Sri Lanka `A' had replied with 67 for one wicket losing
opener Chaminda Mendis for 20 to a sharp rising delivery from Cameron
Cuffy which he edged to the wicket-keeper.
Duleep Samaraweera was unbeaten at the close on a well compiled 30 in
91 minutes with four fours and `nigh***chman' Wendell Labrooy on
nought having survived a torrid over from Cuffy.
The 90-minute cameo performance put up by openers Stuart Williams and
Philo Wallace turned out to be a camouflage as West Indies `A' put
into bat first by Skipper Sanjeeva Ranatunga, lost their last wickets
for 47 runs _ all to Kalpage.
Williams and Wallace***ed the Sri Lanka new ball attack of Pramodya
Wickremasinghe and Labrooy to raise an opening partnership of 104 off
Wallace who has scored two successive centuries on the tour so far was
in a aggressive mood punishing Labrooy for 22 runs (4 fours and 1 six)
off the bowler's first over. West Indies raced to 51 for no loss off
just 32 balls and one wondered whether it was a one-day contest that
was taking place.
Wickremasinghe's first spell of four overs cost him 34 runs (5 fours,
1 six) and Labrooy's first four overs 47 runs (5 fours, 3 sixes).
Wallace completed his half-century off 36 balls in 56 minutes with six
fours and three sixes out of a total of 96.
Ranatunga checked the run flow by introducing a double spin attack of
Jayantha Silva and Kalpage. Silva achieved the initial break-through
by having Wallace caught in the slips for 56 scored at a run a ball.
Sri Lanka `A' claimed another wicket on the stroke of lunch when
Wickremasinghe returning for his third spell, forced Williams to edge
a catch to Nawaz at second slip. Williams scored 52 in two hours with
one six and seven fours.
Wickremasinghe continued his impressive spell after the lunch break by
sending back Floyd Reifer for one and vice-captain David Joseph for
Skipper Roger Harper halted the slide with Tony Powell by putting
together a fifth wicket partnership of 53 before Kalpage came on to
take the honours away from the West Indies.
In a superb second spell of 13.5 overs, Kalpage took six wickets for
39 runs to have all the West Indies back in the pavilion by the 65th
It was a fine piece of off-spin bowling by Kalpage who would have done
himself a lot of good in earning a recall to the senior side with this
performance. Unfortunately for him, Sri Lanka do not have any
international engagements until March next year after the Sharjah
tournament. But one hopes the national selectors will earmark him when
future selections are made.
None of the West Indies batsmen with the exception of Harper, himself
an off-spinner, played Kalpage with any comfort. They were totally
bemused by the amount of spin and variation Kalpage subjected them to.
The six-wicket haul was not only Kalpage's best in first-class
cricket, but it also took him past 200 first-class wickets in an
eight- year career.
Providing Kalpage with excellent support was Wickramasinghe who is
also keen to impress the selectors for a recall to the national side.
After a poor opening spell, Wickremasinghe found his line and length
right and his third spell of five overs for 3 for 14 tells how well he
Fast bowler Nuwan Soysa was declared unfit and Labrooy was drafted
into the side as the only change from the side named on Tuesday.
Sri Lanka `A' are trailing 1-0 in the three-match series, having lost
the first Test at Kurunegala by 10 wickets.