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Kandy SC fight-back to beat Police 29-11

A superb second half rally enabled Kandy Sports Club to beat a gallant Police outfit by 29 points (three goals, one try and one penalty) to 11 (one try, one drop goal, one penalty) in their Caltex ‘A’ Division League rugby match played at Police Park yesterday after trailing 5-11 at the breather.

The Police forwards came up with a sterling display to match up to the power-packed Kandy ‘eight’ in the loose. Nishantha Welagedera, Pradeep Wilson, Nalin Archarige, Asela Vithana, Gonawela and skipper Nilusha Fernando gave Kandy’s Jeewa Galgamuwa, Anuraga Walpola, Sumedha Jayasinghe, Imran Bisthamin, Dilip Selvam and Sean Wijesinghe, a torrid time in the loose. The policemen also won a large share of possession from the line outs with Wilson, Vithana and Archarige having the edge over Kandy’s Sumedha Jayasinghe and Bisthamin while in the set scrums Kandy’s Walpola got the better of his vis-a-vis Gamage.

The famed Kandy three quarters were also kept in close check by the Police ‘threes’ which some resolute tackling which saw Kandy SC crossing Police’s goal line only on one occasion in the first half.

Kandy SC opened scoring in the 5th minute when winger Sanjeeva Jayasinghe scored mid right off a three quarter move. Saliya Kumara missed the conversion. In the 17th minute, Police centre Harshana Wijeweera dropped a peach of a goal from 40 metres out and two minutes later they snatched the lead when centre Chula Susantha made a break in the Kandy ‘40’ and slung out a pass to winger Surath Randima who sped over 20 metres to fall over for an unconverted try by the right corner flag (Police 8-5).

In the 34th minute Harshana Wijeweera fired across a 35 metre penalty to give Police a 11-5 lead at ‘lemons’.

In the 20th minute of the second half Kandy SC reduced the deficit when Saliya Kumara put over a 30 metre penalty. Ten minutes later the ball came Kandy’s way off a maul in the Police ‘25’ and scrum half Saliya Kumara slung out a pass to winger Sanjeeva Jayasinghe who dashed through to score by the right corner flag. Saliya Kumara made a spectacular conversion to make it 15-11 in Kandy’s favour.

In the 31st minute of the second half Kandy’s prop forward Eranga Swarnatilleke picked up a loose ball and crashed through for a try mid right. Saliya Kumara added the extra points and Kandy led 22-11.

Two minutes before the final whistle Kandy’s centre Sajith Mallikarachchi kicked ahead and co-centre Pradeep Liyanage who followed it, collected the ball and slung out a pass to winger Sanjeeva Jayasinghe who dashed through 30 metres, crossed Police’s goal line and ran round to score under the posts - his third try of the match, to give Radhika Hettiarachchi an easy kick at goal and Kandy ran out winners by 29 points to 11.

Referee: Aruna Jayasekera.



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