SATURDAY, 16 JULY 2011 00:34
By U.J. Jezeem – Kandy Sports correspondent
Vidyartha College, Kandy won the schools under 20 Division one Segment B Championship when they beat St. John’s College, Nugegoda by the record margin of 210 points (25 goals, 7 tries) to nil at Nittawala yesterday.
At lemons Vidyartha College led 114 nil. But rugby was reduced to a farce in this match as at one stage only ten players were seen on the field instead of the thirty players as stipulated in the regulation.
From the start of the match the St. John’s College ruggerites limped off the field one by one without informing the referee or subjecting themselves for a medical examination even though a doctor was available. Not even the Match Commissioner R. Wijewardena was aware why they walked off.
What surprised the spectators this was a match there was hardly any tackles, racks or mauls as the Vidyartha ruggerites simply ran through their opponents like a hot knife through butter.
Referee Faizal told the “DAILY MIRROR” that the St. John’s ruggerites did not inform him while going off the field. At the breather they indicated their desire to call off the match but the referee had told them that this did not fall within his purview.
Immediately after the breather St. John’s team had only five players on the field and Vidyartha too reduced their number to five. The game was stopped several times in the second as the visiting team was not willing to continue. Surprisingly in the 15th minute of the second half St. John’s increased their number to seven and Vidyartha College did likewise. This comedy of errors continued much to the annoyance of the spectators. The match was finally called off with about 20 minutes play remaining.
One wonders whether rules regarding the minimum number of players on the field was violated when there were only five players on the side. Can players walk off the field at will without informing the referees?
Doctor in attendance said that only two players from the visiting team warranted replacement and the others were fit to play. How can they leave the field without a tackle or injury. St. John’s College had 15 players on the field when the match started. There were also a few reserves seated in the bench. How can such large number get injured in a one sided game.
This was Vidyartha’s tenth successive win for the season and they have now scored 777 points during the season which may be a record.
Vidyartha College scored their tries through centre Dhanushka Talwatte (7), No 8. Jason Dissanayake (5), Prop Amith Bandara (5), prop Ishara Shakila (1), lock Lahiru Ratnadivakara (2), hooker Lakmal Herath (1), lock Ayesh Galahawela (3), flanker Mahesh Ratnayake (1), centre Kavinda Perera (1), winger Supun Dissanayake (1), flanker Samitha Salinda (1), full back Isuru Lakmal (1), flanker Himasha Ranawaka (1), Bran Samarakoon (1) and centre Kasun Dissanayake (1), centre Dhanushka Talwatte goaled 10 tries and the balance 15 tries were goaled by No 8. Jason Dissanayake.
Mohammed Fizal refereed.