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දේශ ප්‍රේමි අභිමාන සුපූජිත වීර සිසුන් බිහිවේවා !

Experienced Vidyartha – a force to be reckoned with – Daily News

Monday, May 7th, 2012

Friday, 4 May 2012

Experienced Vidyartha – a force to be reckoned with

S.M. Jiffrey ABDEEN, Kandy Sports Corr

Vidyartha College, Kandy, who have returned to the Premier Division Schools Rugby this year will be fielding an experienced side with no less than 11 senior players and should be a team to watch this season.

Jason Dissnayake

Dhanushka Talwatte
(vice captain)

Kavindu Perera

Ashan Bandara

Chamath Fernando

Samantha Bandara

Lahiru Ratnadivakara

Amith Bandara

Eran Samarakoon

Isuru Lakmal

They have the potential to spring a surprise or two as the season progresses. They have made their intention clear in their opening game played down in Colombo against strong Isipathana College which ended in a 19 all draw. This is a clear indication of their capabilities. In the second match they went down to Royal – 29-38.

Leading Vidyartha College is fourth year coloursman Jason Dissanayake who will occupy the No. 8 berth and could also play also as flanker. In fact he started playing as a centre and later changed to the third row. Last season he scored as many as 38 tries and also represented the Junior National team. A very good runner and has the speed and power which has made his one of the top players in schools today. He is also a reliable place kicker.

The Deputy Skipper of the side is junior national poolist Dhanushka Talwatte, a third year coloursman. A hard and penetrative runner who scored 35 tries last season. He is also known for his bruising tackles.

Ashan Bandara is another third year coloursman who will occupy the pivotal position of fly half and is known for his execution of drop goals from any angle which could change the complexion of a closely contested game.

Nippy scrum half and third year coloursman Chamath Fernando has the knack for spotting gaps and sneaking through it. He is also the place kicker of the side and could also execute drop goals, if an opportunity prevails.

In second year player Lahiru Ratnadivakara the team has the heaviest rugby player in schools this season. Standing over six foot and weighs 123 kilogrammes and towers high in the line outs. He will play as a lock forward.

The other second year players in the side are Eran Samarakoon (tight head prop), Amith Bandara (prop), Isuru Lakmal (full back), Samantha Bandara (winger) and Samitha Bandara (flanker).

The team is very strong in both at lack and defence and their loose play could ruffle any team. Their rough edges need more chiselling and they should put more finesse in their play.

Last season they fared extremely well to remain unbeaten and earn a promotion to segment A of Division one. They also kept a new schools record by defeating St. John’s College, Nugegoda 203-0.

The Vidyartha College Rugby Pool 2012. (Pictures by S.M. Jiffrey Abdeen – Kandy Sports Correspondent)

In the other matches they beat D.S. Senanayake College 44-7, beat C.W.W. Kannangara MMV 63-0, beat Zahira College 51-0, beat Mahanama College 37-36, beat St. Anne’s College 136-0, beat St. Sylvester’s College 66-11, beat Royal College, Panadura 65-17, beat Ananda College 43-11, beat Lumbini College 36-32, beat Prince of Wales College 34-11.

The team is coached by Anil Jayasinghe, a well-known rugby referee and an experience rugby coach with coaching experience at Dharmaraja College and Trinity College before returning to his alma mater where he has started a Rugby Academy with the support of the Old Vidyarthians Rugby Club who are extending their fullest support to take rugby in the school to great heights.

Coach Anil Jayasinghe said that it is a misconception that the rugby standards at Vidyartha College had dropped by playing in the lower division. Theirs is not an elite school and they mould rugby players from raw rural talent and when they look promising the other schools grab them with various inducements. One year they lost as many seven players to other schools and were finding it difficult even to field a team. But this trend has been now arrested by tightening the rules and they will have to remain at Vidyartha College.

Vidyartha College started playing rugby in the early sixties and was the third school from Kandy to play rugby at that time.

They have served national rugby with some top players like ‘Viper’ Edwin Gunaratne, Sunil Serasinghe, George Jayasena, T.B. Wijesinghe, Sunil Munasinghe, H.G. Ariyaratne, Nimal Malagamuwa, Sumedha Malewana, Charles Wijewardena, Sunil Perera, Nilan Ekanayake, Saliya Kumara, Danushka Pushpakumara and Charith Seneviratne.

The others in the pool are: Ravindra Upul (flanker), Dilshan Gunaratne (hooker), Sachin Abeysekera (flanker), Romesh Bandara (flanker), Ashan Fernando (prop), Niroshan Bandara (lock), Eran Samarakoon (prop), Viduranga Ramawickrema (prop), Sathyajaya Abeyratne (centre), Chandana Samarawickrema (winger), A.G.R. Amarasiri (flanker), A.P.S.T. Salinda (winger). Nalin Wijesinghe is the Assistant coach. The others involved in rugby are: Ananda Upatissa (POG), who is also the Master In Charge, Vijitha Bandara Physical Trainer.


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