CH & FC managed to win a pivotal game against defending champions Kandy Sports Club 33 points to 17, in yet another Dialog Rugby League encounter played at the Racecourse International Stadium this evening.
CH & FC dominated the game throughout the full eighty minutes of play as Kandy, for the first time this season, struggled to execute their game plans.
Nigel Ratwatte kick started this crunch game as CH looked to boost their winning streak to seven back-to-back wins, against the champions. Samuel Maduwantha managed to bisect the uprights through a penalty kick and give the home team an early lead. (CH 03 – 00 KANDY)
Kandy retaliated back at CH straight away as Adam Guader was penalized for a seat belt tackle as Kandy opted to kick for touch and their rolling maul was solid to take them over the line as Yakoob Ali managed to touch down for the hill capital team. The conversion from the top point scorer, Thilina Wijesinghe was successful to add the extras. (CH 03 – 07 KANDY)
CH played patiently as their forwards made strong carries; Niwanka Prasad broke the advantage line as CH used their quality Backs when Hirantha Perera opened up Adam Guader with a back-of-the-hand pass while Guader managed to commit the Kandy full back Wijesinghe towards him and put Nishon Perera free to score for the Gymkhana club (CH 08 – 07 KANDY).
Few minutes later Kandy made few elementary mistakes and Maduwantha punished them for it, as he slotted in the 40-meter penalty to increase the CH lead (CH 11 – 07 KANDY).
Kandy continued to leak penalties while Thilina Wijesinghe was sent to the bin as CH continued to push hard on the Kandy defense with several picks and drives until Kavindu Kariyawasam finally went over the line to score an important try just before the break.
Half Time – CH & FC 16 (2T,2P) – KANDY SC 07 (1T,1C)
CH controlled the early exchanges in the second half, but Kandy pounced back at the first opportunity they received as the champions moved the ball to the wider channels quickly with Jason Dissanayake cutting back in from the corner. CH had to commit three defenders towards Dissanayake as a timely offload to Vishwamithra Jayasinghe was enough to send the winger to score. Wijesinghe managed to cross the uprights to add the extras. (CH 16 – 14 KANDY)
CH continued to play attacking rugby, though they conceded early as the discipline from Kandy in the breakdown was poor. The visitors gave away penalties cheaply while the nippy scrum half Sudam Sooriyaarachchi took a quick tap. He managed to take CH closer towards the white wash as Maduwantha managed to collect the ball from Sooriyaarachchi to go over the line for the third try as the Kandy defense was caught napping throughout the two phases of play. Maduwantha converted his try to increase their lead. (CH 23 – 14 KANDY)
Kandy was awarded the penalty in the 60th minute of play when CH was deemed offside by referee Gunarathne as Kandy opted to go for the sticks with Wijesinghe scaling the uprights easily to add the three-pointer to reduce the deficit. (CH 23 – 17 KANDY)
Kandy were yet again Punished as they continued to give away penalties. The young kicking sensation Samuel Maduwantha slotted in a perfect kick to take his team to a 9-point lead. (CH 26 – 17 KANDY)
Sudam Sooriyaarachchi was rewarded for his superlative performance throughout the game when he scored the winning try. In the build up to the try, a huge hit by Adam Gauder sucked in the last of the Kandy defenders as Sooriyaarachchi picked up the loose ball and went over the line to celebrate this monumental victory for the Gymkhana club.
SEE MORE: THEPAPARE STATS CENTRE
Full Time – CH & FC 33 (4T,2C,3P) – KANDY SC 17 (2T,2C,1P)
ThePapare.com’s Player of the Match – Sudam Sooriyaarachchi (CH & FC)
Match Referee – Priyantha Gunarathne
CH & FC: Tries from Nishon Perera, Kavindu Kariyawasam, Sudam Sooriyaarachchi, Samuel Maduwantha, Conversions (2) & Penalties (3) by Samuel Maduwantha
KANDY: Tries from Yakoob Ali. Vishwamithra Jayasinghe, Conversion (2) and Penalty by Thilina Wijesinghe
Cautions & Send offs:
KANDY: Thilina Wijesinghe (Yellow)