Sadeera Samarawickrama hogged the limelight with an unbeaten century, as St. Joseph s College posted 180 for two wickets at close, in reply to Pete s 236 for nine wickets, on day one of the 79th Battle of the Saints encounter at the P. Sara Oval in Colombo, on Friday.
Samarawickrama stroked 13 fours and one six in his 124-ball knock which enabled the Joes to be in a strong position, though they took the field as underdogs in the traditional encounter.
He added 92 runs for the second wicket with Dylan Fernandopulle after the early dismissal of opener Yashan Samarasinghe, who was out for one run, caught off the bowling of Ranitha Liyanarachchi.
Samarawickrama added an unbroken 77 runs with skipper Sachin Hewawasam, after the vital partnership was broken by Shasheen Fernando, who had Fernandopulle lbw for 45 runs.
Hewawasam was unbeaten on 20.
Earlier, put into bat, Janith Liyanage s aggressive 70 runs and number 10 batsman Chrishan Fernando s unbeaten 42 runs stood in good stead for the Petes who made 236 runs for nine wickets in their allotted 60 overs, in the first innings.
Liyanage scored seven fours and three sixes in his knock, which came in 67 balls.
Chrishan Fernando anchored the tail for the Petes to jump over the 200 run mark.
Young spinner Aravinda Akurugoda, with three wickets for 45 runs, was the pick of the bowlers for the Joes.