The Longdon Place club, CR & FC took home a 27-14 victory against CH & FC in the traditional Captain’s fixture that was worked off today at the CR & FC grounds.
Getting a new life after two disappointing seasons, the Colombo Hockey and Football Club (CH & FC) is finally taking shape as a competitive outfit having recruited the services of notable talent such as Lee Keegal, Sathya Ranathunga and Henry Terrance while contracting fresh schoolboy talent.
The game kicked off with CH & FC drawing first blood off the boot of Samuel Maduwantha. The former St. Anthony’s kicking marvel making his club rugby start didn’t fail to disappoint kicking a 25m penalty (3-0).
Fresh from the Asia Sevens, vice-captain for CR & FC Tarinda Ratwatte kicked the equalizer soon after but with CH & FC awarded another penalty for a late tackle, Samuel Maduwantha made sure his team once again gets the lead with another 30m penalty.
It was a pre-season tester for CR & FC who opted to give game time to their new recruits.
With the heavy physical contest in the middle, it took the hosts 30 minutes to score the first try. Breaking out from the 5m scrum, Omalka Gunarathane was unstoppable to the try line with his signature ward off. Ratwatte failed to convert.
Soon after the restart, the CR & FC players were to work their way up for a second with the help of their forwards as Kokila Sammandaperuma did the scoring duties. The second also went unconverted.
Halftime: CR & FC 13 – CH & FC 6
The Gymkhana club players struggled in playing the ball wide despite having experienced players such as Anurada Herath, Lee Keegal and Chula Susantha in their three-quarter line up.
Maduwantha however had the chance of cutting the deficit by three more when he slotted another penalty through to take the score up to 9 points.
CH’s mistakes cost them as continuous infringements in the breakdown in their defending 5m territory saw referee Dinka Peiris award a penalty try for CR & FC. (20-6)
After a long wait, CH & FC were finally able to score off a 5m penalty with the help of their forwards pack. The ex-sailor Sathya Ranathunga did the scoring duties. The conversion didn’t sail through.
Coming late in the match, Reeza Raffaideen’s explosive sprint saw Thisala Karunathilake converting it to valuable points for CR scoring right of the goal posts to finish the pre-season game on a victorious note.
“It was a good win. Gave our new guys the chance to play and get good game time before the season starts. Hope we can make our mistakes and look ahead to the league” added winning captain of CR & FC Kavindu Perera
“The result was not the important outcome but our team bonded well. The team is still fresh and think we can take the positives out of it” added coach of CH & FC Tavita Tulagese’ Laga.
It was good win for CR & FC but CH & FC shouldn’t be too disappointed with their performance and will no doubt take it as a learning curve ahead of the Dialog Rugby League kickoff.