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Royal-Isipatana clash for Milroy Fernando Trophy

The eagerly awaited confrontation between Royal College and Isipatana College for the Major Milroy Fernando Memorial Trophy which was scheduled to be played at Havelock Park on May 29 (Saturday) may be shifted to Longden Place to be worked off on May 30 (Sunday).

The Chairman of Isipatana rugby Hassan Singhawansa said that due to the poor ground conditions at Havelock Park Isipatana have decided to play the match at Longden Place on May 30 if Royal too agrees as CR will be taking on Air Force at the same venue on May 29.

Isipatana with a fine set of forwards and a superb set of three quarters will go all out to regain the Milroy Fernando Trophy which they last won in 2008 by overcoming Royal by 17-12 at the same venue. Spearheaded by No 8 Tharindu Siriwardena ably supported by Sajid Suhayb, Prasad Madusanka, Deshan Archarige, Danushka Sooriyarachchi and Makshid Kuthdoos the Isipatana ‘eight’ should be able to match upto the marauding Royal forwards Yudith Karunaratne, Adil Jabbar, Lahiru Pavithra, Shehan Dassanayake, Thilina Ratnayake and Shehan Pathirana who gave a marvellous display to completely outplay the Peterite ‘eight’ two days ago.

With the halves combination of Mohamed Rizwan and Prasad Devinda combining effectively the Isipatana ‘threes’ Ashen Govinda, Pramoda Mekalanka, Umayanga Sooriyabandara and Shanaka Kumara should be able to breach the Royal defence.

In addition the lads from Havelock Town have the services of a superb place kicker Malik Jumat who played a key role by contributing 11 points to their narrow 16-15 win over St Anthony’s.

Royal’s three quarters squandered the hard earned possession by the forwards by poor ball handling knocking on at crucial moments with the goal line staring at them.

But their biggest problem will be the lack of a place kicker with fly half Arshad Jamaldeen giving another pathetic display which saw Royal losing to the formidable Peterites by a whisker (20-22).

Royal are the holders of the trophy having won last year’s game by 22 points to 3 but their three quarters will have to give a much better display if they hope to emerge victorious.

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