Tharinda Silva scored a goal at the end of each half for Maris Stella College as the boys from Negombo overcame De Mazenod College 1-3 in their Group B fixture of ThePapare Football Championship, at the latter’s home grounds in Kandana.
Both teams came into the fixture sitting at the top of the table in group B, with 2 wins and a draw to their names, looking to cement their place at the top of the pile.
Maris Stella looked threatening right from the word go and almost took the lead in the 3rd minute of the game, via a free kick from Silva which the De Mazenod goal keeper parried away. MP Shaminda too had a chance to score a minute later but his volley went wide of the goal.
Kigswood College Kandy held the much fancied St. Joseph’s..
The home team got a few shots in but the sustained pressure by Maris Stella paid off when PRM Fernando found the back of the net in the 11th minute of play – giving the visitors the early advantage.
De Mazenod began to get into the game gradually and their star player Pramuditha Gunasekara had an opportunity to equalize from a free kick but his well-directed shot was palmed onto the crossbar by Maris Stella’s keeper MPP Perera to keep the home team goalless.
The 2nd goal came for Maris Stella just as the teams readied for half-time as Silva, the lanky forward dribbled passed a couple of defenders to slot the ball into the top right corner of the net.
Half-time: De Mazenod 0 – 2 Maris Stella
As the rains got heavier in the 2nd half, the game got sloppier but a few threatening solo runs by Silva kept the Mazedonian defense on their toes.
Another attacking run saw PRM Fernando taken down from behind by Pathum Dilshan of De Mazenod – he was immediately shown a yellow, his 2nd for the game and sent off, putting the hosts in further trouble.
They managed to hold their own however, despite being one man down and perhaps even managed more attacks with Pramuditha Gunasekara getting a couple of opportunities to get on the scoreboard via free kicks.
The breakthrough finally came for the hosts, in unexpected fashion, when Gunasekara overcooked a long ball right into the hands of the Maris Stella keeper. Despite looking like he had it covered, the Goalie fumbled the slippery ball, allowing it to cross the goal line and give De Mazenod a lifeline.
However, despite the lapse, Maris Stella kept up the tempo and Tharinda Silva once again slid past a couple of defenders in the 93rd minute to seal the deal with yet another goal at TPFC 2018.
Full time: De Mazenod 1 – 3 Maris Stella
ThePapare Player of the Match – Tharinda Silva (Maris Stella College)
Maris Stella College – PRM Fernando 11’, Tharinda Silva 45+3’, 90+3’
De Mazenod College – Pramuditha Gunasekara 80’
Maris Stella – BM Sajith 63’
De Mazenod – Avishka Jeewantha 29’, Pathum Dilshan 31’
De Mazenod – Pathum Dilshan 56’