All the old and present boys of St. Peter’s College Bambalapitiya and St. Joseph’s College Maradana will be there in their large numbers on March 5 to witness the second day of the Joe-Pete annual cricket big at the P. Sara Oval. The match began on Friday. This year’s ‘Battle of the Saints’ marks the encounter and is played for the Rev. Fr. Maurice Le Goc Challenge Trophy.
During the past 81 encounters, St. Joseph’s College have emerged the victor on 12 occasions while the Peterites have nine wins. Sixty matches ended without a result. The Rev. Fr. Maurice Le Goc Memorial Trophy is presently in the custody of the Peterites following their win in 2012. That year the Petes are led by Shehan Fernando, son of former Sri Lanka “A” cricket captain and present NCC head coach Sajith Fernando. The Josephians’ last win was achieved in 2008 under the leadership of Ruwantha Fernandopulle.
This year, the Peterites under the leadership of skipper Vinu Mohotty possess a strong batting line up. The team comprises players in the calibre of Lakshina Rodrigo who has scored 800 runs with four centuries. Hashan Wanasekera has scored two centuries has also topped over 800 runs.
The other top players Ranmith Jayasena (650 runs) along with Manelker de Silva, skipper Vinu Mohotty, Inesh Fernando, Santhush Gunatilleke and Anishka Perera will be expected to make generous contributions with the bat.
In the bowling department, they will heavily depend on Taneesha Weerakoon, their highest wicket taker with 80 plus wickets. Skipper Mohotty who has taken over 70 wickets along with Dinal Jayakody, Sadish Pathiranage and Ravindu Silva will offer him assistance.
St. Peter’s College remain unbeaten so far in the season and have recorded six outright wins. The Peterites are coached by Malinda Warnapura.
Last year’s ‘Big Match’ centurion Sandaruwan Rodrigo is the captain of St. Joseph’s College. He has scored 500 plus runs with three fifties.
St. Joseph’s College under the leadership of Rodrigo, commenced the season with victories over Mahanama College Colombo, Maris Stella College Negombo, De Mazenod College Kandana, Wesley College Colombo, St. Anthony’s College Kandy and Mahinda College Galle but lost to Royal College Colombo and St. Benedict’s College Kotahena.
Revan Kelly, the left-handed opener, has topped the batting with over 700 runs this season. The right-handed middle-order batsman and right-arm opening bowler and Sri Lanka youth cap Jehan Daniel and Malshan Rodrigo, the left-arm spinner cum middle order batsman who has nearly 70 plus wickets together with 500 plus runs, are the key players in the side.
Asela Pathirana and Michael Adams play the roles of head coach and assistant coach respectively.