Published: Wednesday, 30 November -0001 05:19
Saunders SC a club rich in history and championships is synonymous with football in Sri Lanka. The contribution made by Saunders SC for the advancement of football in Sri Lanka is inestimable.
Saunders SC was formed in 1918, with the initiation of Richard Dias of S.Benedict’s College and his football fanatic friends living around Price Park, Pettah. Richard was the third of four brothers, Marshall, Philip and George whom also excelled at football. The boys’ father, Girigoris Dias a businessman by profession was the first President of the club while Peter Perera was the first secretary. Richard captained the side which included the likes of D.H.O. Melder, Erwin Perera, Don Joseph, Sabreen and Velayutham. The four Dias brothers also went on to play for the national side. They were the first quartet to play for the national team, a feat later equalled by the Hassimdeen brothers –Naheem, Muzzammil, Subhani and Uvaisul. The Chief Playground Instructor and mentor, P.G. De Silva, was the principal figure behind these great players.
From its humble beginnings Saunders grew in size and stature as the years rolled by, and this illustrious club has maintained its pride and position through the years, gathering strength and success in the process. There have been numerous players who have donned the national jersey of whom P.D.Sirisena, Eric Perera, Basheer Ahmed, C.S.Fernando, K.A. Premadasa, K.S. Richard, J.Azeez, Lionel Peiris, Mohamed Ameer, Mahinda Palitha, Edward Wickremasuriya, Sivaratnam and Jude Perera are some of the finest.
With 12 League titles and 16 FA Cup Championships Saunders SC are the Manchester United of Sri Lankan football. The Price Park team has been involved in 20 FA Cup finals losing just 4 which is an impressive record.
Sri Lankan Premier League (12)
•Winner : 1985, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1991, 1992, 1996, 1997, 1998–99, 2000–01, 2001–02, 2005
Sri Lankan FA Cup (16)
•Winner : 1949, 1952, 1954, 1955, 1960, 1963, 1964, 1982, 1983–84, 1984–85, 1987–88, 1991–92, 1992–93, 1996–97, 1998–99, 2000-01.
•Finalists : 1988-89, 1999-00, 2005, 2007
Asian Club Championship
•7 Appearances : 1985-86, 1986-87, 1988-89, 1995-96, 1997-98, 1998-99, 2001-02
AFC Champions League
•2002-03 : Qualifying round
The current squad includes Youth National players in, Indeeva Udara, Chalana Chameera, Mohamed Rimzan and Chanuka Eranga. Also former national skipper Rohana Ruwanthilaka, Imran Mohamed, Isuru Uditha Perera, Dumidu Hettiarachchi, Sanoj Sameera, Chathura Samarasekara, Asanka Viraj, Sudara Madushanka have represented the Sri Lankan National side. They are coached by the great former Sri Lanka player and coach, P.D. Sirisena.
Having not won any major silverware since 2005 Saunders will be desperate to win the DCL2013 and they have the quality, skill, youth and experience in the squad to achieve this goal.
1.Asanka Viraj (Captain)
4.K. D. Edirisinghe
7.A. C. Sanjeewa
21.Isuru Uditha Perera.
24.Jayasinghe Mendis (Manager)
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Battle of the Saints
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|Live streaming on www.thepapare.com|
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