Air Force created a big upset by defeating the much-fancied Army outfit 33 points (5T, 4C) to 10 (2T) in their second round encounter of the Dialog Rugby League played at Ratmalana earlier this evening.
The Airmen looked a different outfit from the last game as they were quick at the breakdown and the backs clicking together with fast-paced moves. Padamasanka Weerasinghe broke through the Army defense and was brought down inches from the try line but Lahiru Udayangakumara made a pick and drive to find the white wash to open the scoring for the Airmen. Charith Senevirathne bisected the uprights. (Air Force 07-00 Army)
Soon after the first try, the Airmen grew their lead grow when Pabasara Hewage made a crucial turnover near the 22 meter line and scored under the post as the Army defense was caught napping. Senevirathne added the extras. (Air Force 14-00 Army)
Army came back hard on the Airmen with a few attacking moves and finally scored through Sudaraka Dikkubura in the corner as a result of Army spreading the ball to the corner for their winger to touch down. Salinda missed the opportunity to add the extras.
Airmen bounced back quickly to increase their lead when Soorya Krishan found some space and made inroads into the Army defense and drew three defenders toward him and offloaded the ball to Ishara Madushan to score. Senevirathne couldn’t add the extra points as his kick hit the right upright.
The Airmen had a setback on the brink of half time when playmaker Gayantha Iddamalgoda was sin binned for a reckless high tackle.
Half Time – Air Force 19 (3T, 2C) – 05 (1T) Army
Air Force drew first blood in the second half from a perfectly executed scissor pass from the makeshift fly half Ishara Madushan as he opened up space for Supun Madushanka to touch down. The conversion was successful by Senevirathne. Army hit back straight away through a counterattacking try by Roshan Sampath as he made a powerful run to score a much needed try for Army . Salinda missed his conversion once again. (Air Force 26-10 Army)
Any comeback efforts from Army were hampered when Manoj Bandara was sent to the bin for foul play.
Air Force made the maximum of the numerical advantage when playmaker Iddamalgoda went over to increase their lead. Senevirathne managed to add the extras this time around. (Air Force 33-10 Army)
The Airmen went down to fourteen in the final stages of game when Soorya Krishan was sin binned for a high tackle but that didn’t affect the score line as the game ended giving a comprehensive victory to the Airmen.
Full Time – Air Force 33 (5T, 4C) – 10 (2T) Army
ThePapare Player of the Match: Ishara Madushan (Air Force SC)
The Score Breakdown
Air Force SC 33 (19) 5T, 4C
Tries by Lahiru Udayangakumara, Pabasara Hewage, Ishara Madushan, Supun Madushanka and Gayantha Iddamalgoda, Conversions by Charith Senevirathne (4)
Army SC 10 (05) 2T
Tries by Sudaraka Dikkubura and Roshan Sampath
Bookings (Yellow Cards) – Gayantha Iddamalgoda, Soorya Krishan (Air Force) and Manoj Bandara (Army)