Kandy has a proud history in sports……
Kandy has established a proud record of producing some of the top most sports personalities in Sri Lanka in four major outdoor sports such as cricket, rugby, hockey and football of which today rugby is the most popular and dominated sport in the region at club level. In today’s competitive environment, there are many sports clubs all fighting to attract sports people’s attention. Today clubs are finding it extremely difficult keep the sport going. One reason is that the governing body does not give any financial support. They only become active during the AGM. There are no tournaments for clubs and as a result no clubs attract sponsors.
After many years, something admirable and which should be appreciated happened, thanks to the new president of the CPCA Sarath Ekanayake the Chief Minister and able secretary Janaka Pathirana. They saw to the successful end of the Division III cricket tournament in which Old Rajans CC under the captaincy of Sumil Ranasinghe emerged as champions and are sure to be promoted to the next level. At one time when sportsmen and enthusiasts like Dr. C.D. L Fernando and Harindra Dunuwille controlled cricket it was at its best.
The game at top level is apparently in the lad of nod still with no club tournaments, but it should be said that schools are doing well especially the girls, who are dominating the game but at club level it is a dead story. Who is to be blamed other than the KDHA and why is the main controlling body not pushing them to play hockey? Only during the AGM that they become active. Everyone who loves hockey is waiting eagerly for the revival of club hockey. The conducting of organized tournaments in Kandy is nil. The Kandy District Hockey Association today is like a ship sans a rudder. A great effort is needed to bring club hockey in Kandy back to the glorious years it enjoyed in the past. This sport reached great heights when it was under people like P.T. Rajan, the man who introduced illustrious men like, M.S. Jainudeen, V.D. Paul Raj, J.O. Mendis Dr. A. Samad Ismail, Douglas Bartholomeusz, F.H.B. Wood, Sam Elhart, Victor Ratnawale, H.W. Bobby Jayaweera, P. Thangavelu, Philip Buultjens, G.H. Robinson, George Mant, K. de Lanerolle, W. Rupasinhe, Roy de Silva and Lakshman Seneviratne who promoted the game to reach great heights. The hockey-loving public in Kandy humbly appeals to the Sports Minister to investigate into the plight of hockey in Kandy and put things in order for its revival.
Football is known to be the poor man’s game, but today the game seems to be dying a natural death which is sad. Today Kandy’s club football is in the funeral parlor. The question is who is fooling whom? At football Kandy has become the laughing stock. The football lovers in Kandy are disappointed. The last time when Kandy football flourished was during the time of Bodhi Liyanage’s leadership as president. For the first time Kandy became Inter league champions and also made its first overseas tour. The man who should take the blame is FFSL president of the years 2010-12 for letting down Kandy football when it was at its best. He dissolved the league and from here onwards the game went to ruin. This person for the third time was elected sans an election. He had sought special permission from the Minister of Sport as he was contesting for a third year in succession.
Rugby is the most popular club game in Kandy. For the last two decades Kandy Sports Club has been dominating by winning the league 17 times since 1994 and knockouts 20 times since 1992. They have also won the 7’s on many occasions from 1999 and the President’s trophy on many occasions. Today Kandy is nothing without rugby at club level. Last season they became the triple champions. Schools rugby however is on a sad note for out of the nine schools only three are playing in Division I of which one school is suspend for bad behavior at a match till next February. By the time the suspension is over half the season would be complete. All schools are blessed with at least three coaches, what they lack is proper guidance.
SLC should give a hand to Asgiriya
The Asgiriya International Stadium, located in the heart of Sri Lanka’s hill-country, is the home ground of Trinity College, one of the most prestigious schools in Sri Lanka. Given the lack of flat space in central Sri Lanka, the ground was carved straight out of the hill behind the pavilion before being leveled by ten feet, and so the end result was one of the most beautiful venues on earth. Access is from the main town, which lies below. This was the main venue for international matches in Kandy before the Pallekelle Stadium was built. Today the school is unable to spend on the maintenance of the ground and is looking for help from SLC. The stadium, has hosted 19 Tests and 6 one-day games since it was first used for official international cricket in 1983.
Kandy Public Services Club 6-a-side cricket
The 70 year old Kandy Public Services Club will hold a 6-a-side cricket tournament today (Saturday) at the Police grounds matting wicket. The winners will receive the Sir Richard Aluwihare memorial trophy. Kandy Public Services Club took part in the inaugural inter club Central Province Cricket tournament in 1946. The teams taking part are Education Department, Kandy Public Services Club, Kandy Municipal Council Playgrounds Section, two teams each and one team each from Provincial Health Department, Kandy Hospital Doctors, Excise Department and Kandy Police. The tournament organizing committee is headed by Dr. H.M.W.D. Hearth and one of the senior hands in the club Walter Ranasinghe who is the secretary of the club.
Seethadevi on top at Blue and Gold hockey 7’s
Seethadevi BMV, who have been dominating girls hockey, due to the keenness of the players, parents and the school emerged as the Girls champions at the Blue and Gold Sevens hockey tournament organized and conducted by the Royal College Hockey Club. In the boy’s event schools like Dharmaraja, Kingswood, Trinity, Vidyartha, St. Sylvester’s and Wariyapola Sri Sumangala took part. In the girls event there was Kandy Girls High School, Gothami BV, Pushpadana Girls College, Seethadfavi BMV and St. Anthony’s Girls College. This was the 14th edition of the tournament and 35 boys and 20 girls’ schools took part.
Under 13 cricket
Under the leadership of Akram Muthalib, Trinity College under 13 “A” side has achieved their best. They have completed six games and will play in the second round. Muthalib who is their opening batsman is shaping up well with the bat. A left-hander he scored 98 vs Wariyapola Sri Sumangala, 51 vs St Anne’s and 58 vs Royal College Polonaruwa. Their main batsman has been Rhala Amarasinghe, the only centurion.
He has scored 118 vs Wickramashila College Giriulla, 88 vs Joseph Vas Wennappuwa, 68 n.o. vs Polonnaruwa Royal College and 46 against Wariyapola Sri Sumangala Kandy. In the bowling off spinner Dineka Ehelepola has taken 7 for 15 runs and 3 for 19 against Wickramashila College, 3 for 54 against Dharmaraja College, 4 for 16 and 4 for 27 against Polonnaruwa Royal College.
Walala A Ratnayake retains trophy
Walala A. Ratnayake Central College retained the girl’s championship at the National School Games Athletics meet which was held at the Bogambara Stadium. Once again this school has made Kandy district proud, they pocketed 159.0 points to emerge overall girls champions for the fourteenth successive year. A big hand should go to the participants, their parents, coaches and the school staff who are involved in this sport.
SLRFU/CPRFU Rugby training in Kandy
In Kandy on October 28, 29 and 30 the SLRFU and CPRFU will be conducting a training education programme for coaches and match officials.
The coach’s part will be handled by one of the most qualified person in the subject Nihal “Viper” Gunaratne and Match Officials part will be handled by one of the top referees in the country Anil Jayasinghe.
On the first day it will be level one match official’s programme, on day two it will be rugby read course for both coaches and match officials and training for coaches. On the third day it will be level one course for coaches.
Nico gives way to Kumar at OTSC
The Old Trinitians Sports Club who celebrated their silver jubilee last year had their AGM and Nico de Silva a senior hand and a man who gave his best to the club as president for two occasions has given way to Kumar Dias de Singe who played rugby for Trinity. Nico was a famous ruggerite and played for CH and FC, Havelock SC, KV and Kandy SC.
Under 12–13 Rugby Carnival
The Schools Rugby Carnival is the largest under 12s and 13s rugby carnival held in the country. Each year this event attracts over 1250 young rugby enthusiasts and their coaches, along with committed families and supporters, who make the tournament enjoyable.
All the Kandy schools Vidyartha, St. Sylvester’s, Trinity, St. Anthony’s, Nugawella Central and Dharmaraja were seen in action. It was sad that Kingswood was not among the schools who took part.