Sri Lanka may have had a tournament to forget, but Jason Dissanayake continued to impress after yet another strong performance for the Tuskers in the recently concluded Monaco Sevens in Fontvieille, Monaco.
The 23-year-OLD VIDYARTHA ended up being the joint highest scorer for the Tuskers , despite them only being able to win one match in the entire tournament.
Dissanayake had a brilliant season for CR and he certainly carried that form in both Fifteens and Sevens rugby. He scored as many as four tries in the tournament, including two against South Korea in the Shield final. He is considered as a forward, but in school he played at several positions in the back division, which is what gives him an edge over the other forwards.
Dissanayake also ended up being the highest scorer for the Tuskers in the Asian Rugby Championship (Fifteens) in Malaysia which concluded a few weeks ago where Sri Lanka finished second.
Kanchana Ramanayake also excelled in Monaco with four tries. It has been an amazing turn around for the CR centre. He was benched in some league matches by the CR management, but he put all that aside to deliver the expected performance for the national team. Ramanayake scored twice against Mexico in Sri Lanka’s only victory of the tournament.
Kandy duo Richard Dharmapala and Srinath Sooriyabandara opted not to take part in the Asian Rugby Championship focusing on Sevens and it seemed to have paid off as both of them had a decent tournament.
A product of Science College, Mount Lavinia, Dharmapala crossed the try line three times in the Monaco Sevens, while Sooriyabandara also chipped in with a couple of tries in addition to a few conversions.
One of the disappointments of the tournament has been Danushka Ranjan. He only scored two tries although he was able to work the ball well. He is the sort of player one would expect to score in almost every match. Despite his performance in Monaco, he will still be considered as an important part of Sri Lanka rugby.
Perhaps it’s time the Sri Lanka Rugby Football Union should consider having two separate sides for Fifteens and Sevens. Players like Kavindu Perera, Dissanayake, Roshan Weeraratne and Sudharshana Muthuthanthri have been playing all season in all formats. There is certainly too much of a workload put on these players.
By Harsha Amarasinghe