Kandy in superb fight-back - beat Army 30-9
It was rugby at its best as the defending Caltex League Champions
Kandy Sports Club staged a magnificent victory over the gallant Sri
Lanka Army to post a 30 points (1 goal, 4 tries, 1 penalty) to 9 (3
penalties) in their Caltex rugby league match played at the Nittawela
rugby stadium in Kandy yesterday. At lemons it was the Soldiers who led
The Soldiers after their recent resounding success in the battlefield
in the North, displayed what a disciplined force they are by playing
fast open rugby which not only rattled the defending champions but also
thrilled the crowds.
Army surged into an early lead through 40 metre penalty fired by
stand off Kapila Knowlton in the 2nd minute of play.
But six minutes later Kandy equalised through a 35 metre penalty put
over by stand-off Fazil Marija.
Thereafter all efforts by Kandy to penetrate the defence put up by
the Soldiers proved futile.
After missing a couple of long distance penalties, stand off Kapila
Knowlton came good in the 32nd minute when he knocked over a 45 metre
penalty for the Soldiers to take over the lead at half time, Army 6-3.
Army continued to dominate play in the early stages of the second
half with some power play which did not have the finish.
In the fifth minute of the second half Army further increased their
lead to 9-3 through a 40 metre penalty converted by stand off Kapila
Kandy brought into play from the reserves bench winger Radhika
Hettiarachchi, hooker Anuranga Walpola and flanker Dilip Selvam in place
of Sameera Silva, Arvinda Udagamuwa and Zafeer Jhan and this had the
In the 6th minute of the second half scrum half Prasad Chaturanga
sent out a low pass to stand off Fazil Marija who cut through Army
defence a good 40 metres to score far left. Full back Mohamed Sheriff
failed to add the extra points. But still Army led 9-8.
It was in the 16th minute of this half or the 56th minute of the
match that Kandy took the lead for the first time in the match when
Chaturanga-Marija combined effort saw ball reading winger Sanjeewa
Jayasinghe who ran along the live about 25 metres before touching down
by the right corner flag. Marija failed to add the extra points Kandy
took the lead for the first time. 13-9.
There was no stopping of this Kandy side who put into play several
ploys which the Soldiers found it difficult to counter and was rattled
in the process.
In the 20th minute a scrum mid field saw the ball coming out Kandy’s
way and scrum half Prasad Chaturanga slung a pass to Fazil Marija who
after covering some distance, handed the ball to No. 8 Sajith Saranga
who pounded his way to fall over far lift. Winger Radhika Hettiarachchi
failed to add the extra points. Kandy 18-9 but still not safe from
In the 25th minute a scrum near the posts saw Kandy moving the ball
to the right flag and winger Sanjeewa Jayasinghe giving the finishing
touches to it. Radhika Hettiarachchi failed to add the extra points.
In the 40th minute of play saw the best try of the match when stand
of Fazil Marija ran a good 20 metre with the ball and when challenged
switch a pass to winger Radhika Hettiarachchi who sent a pass again to
Fazil Marija to plunge over the right corner flag. Radhika Hettiarachchi
made a beautiful conversion.
Nizam Jamaleen refereed.