Capitals Bounce Back With Victory Over Dunes
The cloudy Suva skies and intermittent drizzle couldn’t dampen an exciting day’s play at the Army Barracks ground as Suva Capitals hosted Sigatoka Dunes in the Elite Player League’s Round 3 match.
This match highlighted the topsy-turvey nature of the EPL with any team able to beat their opposition on the day. The Capitals had suffered at the hands of Western Bulldogs last week, but this week they turned tormentor with a 148 run win over the Dunes.
Capitals batted first and lost two early wickets as Lee Waqa struck twice in his first three overs to leave the home side tottering at 2 for 13.
However, skipper Joe Dabea joined with his Fiji Blues teammate Kida Jikoivanualevu to steady the ship and build an 82 run partnership built on correct stroke-play and excellent running between the wickets.
While Dabea was dismissed for 37, Kida continued to plunder runs and steadily built towards a maiden EPL century. With a century looking a formality it took something special to dismiss him and Waqa stepped up.
As Kida lofted a Viliame Yabaki delivery to the long on boundary Waqa charged in and took a spectacular diving catch, clutching the ball just centimeters from the ground, leaving Kida seven runs short of the milestone.
Some tidy late order batting from Greg Browne (20) and big hitting from Mesui Qalobula (18 not out) eventually took the Captials total to 8 for 219 from their 50 overs.
Yabaki was the best of the Dunes bowlers taking 3 for 35, while Waqa claimed 2 for 40 in his ten over spell.
The Dunes batsmen never got going in their reply. Vilikesa Driu caused the most damage taking 4 for 25, while Inoke Cama also claimed three wickets for the Capitals.
In the end, the Dunes were all out for just 71, with Sekove Ravoka top scoring with a patient 21. However, when Driu found a leading edge from Ravoka’s bat the Dunes innings quickly fell apart.
Last game centurion David Kachor went from rooster to feather duster with a four ball duck, while Joji Bulabalavu was the last hope of the team. When he played a poor shot to Cama the innings was effectively over.
The Capitals win leaves each team with one win from two games at the midway point of the season. The result today leaves each of the teams in with a chance of claiming the EPL title as the league moves into the second half of the season.Next week’s match in Lautoka will see Sigatoka hope to bounce back from today’s loss against last match winners Western Bulldogs