Observe the laws - don’t blame referees!
Road to Singer Rugby Asiad 2007:
Tomorrow is the day! - Saturday 3rd November at 4.20 p.m. when all
roads will lead to Longden Place to view the first clash of two National
Rugby teams, China vs Sri Lanka! - the ‘cast’ (or teams) are ready and
the drama will begin! Will it be the Sri Lankans who will be first to
get their ‘act together’ or can China produce their own game style and
pull off a dramatic win?
Sri Lanka is privileged and honoured to have a super sporting
occasion such as this - ‘thank’ once again to the President of the SLRFU
Nimal Lewke and the CEO Dilroy Fernando, who were largely responsible
for scoring an ‘opportunist’s try’ at the ARFU meeting and achieving a
great ‘goal’ for Sri Lanka to stage the Asiad in Colombo. It will
certainly be a fine.
‘Sporting occasion which promises to provide sparkling moments of
entertaining Rugby - as well as making it a fine social event, which
brings people together from far and near to enjoy, relax and spend their
On a brief visit to the SLRFU Headquarters, it was a ‘hive’ of
activity, with people ‘buzzing’ around busy as bees! Under the ‘cool and
collected’ supervision of the CEO and Tournament Director Dilroy
Fernando who was at the helm of it all, exerting gentle control (like he
does so excellently, as a classy referee on the Rugby field!).
There were many involved in the preparation and organising of this
tournament, under the Chairman of the Organising Committee DIG Nimal
Lewke, President of the SLRFU, such as T. M. N. Hamid (Security), Fazal
Mohamed (Grounds and match arrangements), Hassan Sinhawansa
(Secretariat/Registration), Lt. Col. Dhammika Gunasekera (Liaison
Officer), Dr. Seevali Jayawickrema (Director/Medical), Tony Amit
(Transport/Referees/Technical) and Chandrishan Perera (Radio/TV).
It is the development of the game and its culture of sportsmanship in
Sri Lanka, that has to be foremost - before the running of tournaments,
which is also important and vital to impact the Rugby followers in and
around, the neighbouring countries. If there is no ‘vision’ or foresight
in planning, there can be no ‘mission’ or purpose in any form of sport!
Many players, officials and others linked with Rugby make supreme
sacrifices to accomplish what they have set out to do with good
intentions. Therefore, it would be obligatory to ‘consolidate’ and work
as a team - not blaming the individual or pointing of finger at others’
faults - as the familiar phrase says “each time you point your finger at
another, there are three fingers pointing at you!!”
In every Rugby team 15 players form the side but so often in a game
of 80 minutes, one player is singled out for ‘fault finding’ especially
when the game is lost. This deserves more consideration for better
Another frequent complaint is about the ‘Referee’ and the decisions
he made, wrongly or rightly. There is an obligation on the players to
observe the laws and respect the principles of fair play. According to
the principles of Rugby, Referees and Touch Judges must be fair,
consistent, sensitive and maintain highest levels of management of the
game, on the field.
In this tournament too, Referees will be called upon to play a
significant role in keeping with the principles of Rugby.
If these objectives are achieved (with the SLRFU paying keen
attention on every game), it would bring enjoyment and entertainment. It
would also enable the players to win the confidence of a ‘just and fair’
referee, implementing the correct balance of laws - and bring out a fine
flow of skills and movements.
In jocular vein, it was said that every Rugby Referee knows the old
refrain, that is engraved on plaques in Rugby clubs around the world -
“the referee is always right! Stubborn perhaps, misinformed maybe,
incorrect possibly, blind to innovation probably, uncompromising
sometimes - and occasionally, though very infrequently... downright
stupid....but never wrong!!”
Kazakhstan takes on the ‘nippy’ Thailand squad at Royal Complex at
4.20 p.m. tomorrow. This game will be a ‘fight-out’ between the better
built Kazakhastan pack and the swiftness of Thailands mobile, marauding
forwards and three quarters.
Clean, hand and innovative Rugby is what is closets to every heart of
a competent Rugby player! Sri Lanka and perhaps all the other
participating teams would be on the same lines of thinking and would
endeavour to exhibit it, in their performances.