Defending Champions Kandy Sports Club scored nine tries as they racked up a huge 63 points to beat the Sailors 63-31 at Nittawela Rugby grounds in the Dialog Rugby League’s fourth week fixture on Saturday.
As the score-line suggests, the hosts dominated for large periods and eventually outscored their opponents Navy nine tries to five. Thilina Wijesinghe led the way with a 36-point haul, courtesy of four tries and eight conversions. Wijesinghe could do no wrong today as he was at the center of attention in every move. The conversions were certainly on point with some brilliant corner flag kicks being put over.
This is now Kandy’s third win from four matches in the second round and means they will sit atop the points table for another week.
Kandy made a superb start, getting the better of the early exchanges and were rewarded as early as the fourth minute when Lawanga Perera ran onto a pass from Roshan Weerarathne deep inside the 22 before diving over for the opening try. (Kandy 07-00 Navy)
Kandy continued with their attacking approach and were rewarded with a well taken try from the golden boy on the day, Wijesinghe who then had no trouble with the corner flag conversion. (Kandy 14-00 Navy)
Although the game wouldn’t go down in history for coaching tactics in defense, the tries scored were a treat to everyone present and watching, like the interception, 70m run and try from Buddhima Piyarathne. Kandy were high up, attacking using their backs through some smooth moves as a pass from Nigel Ratwatte was intercepted as Mohommed Absal. He ran 70m before being tracked down by Wijesinghe but offloaded the ball to Piyarathne who was running support and touched down with ease. (Kandy 14-07 Navy)
The defending champions continued their pressing-high up approach and were rewarded with two well taken tries from the duo Thilina Wijesinghe and Heshan Silva in quick succession to secure the 4-try bonus point. (Kandy 28-07 Navy)
The final two minutes of the half saw an improved performance from the Sailors and Kandy, after being camped in the Navy half for large periods, eventually decided to put a punt over for their runners which went into the dead goal area. Buddima Piyarathne with his quick decision making made a little kick, collected and got a fine break down the middle. He did well to offload to Mohommed Absal, who chipped past the Kandy backs before dotting down, yet Kandy led 28-14 at half-time.
Half Time- Kandy 28(4T 4C) – 14(2T 2C) Navy
Things went from bad to worse for the visitors as Thanuja Malimboda was sent to the sin-bin for a no arms, in the air tackle on Thilina Wijesinghe.
Kandy then capitalized on the numerical advantage with two quick tries. Thilina Wijesinghe went over for his hattrick, collecting a punt from Ratwatte, intended for Wijesinghe to run at. And the next followed soon afterwards courtesy of a penalty try. Amith Gurusinghe was the culprit there as he came from the side and ripped the ball from the back of a well set, running maul. (Kandy 42-14 Navy)
By this point Kandy had well and truly wrested control of the game and soon Thilina Wijesinghe grabbed his fourth of the day. Earning the right to go wide by sucking in the defenders, Ranjan showed good vision to throw a nice, long ball out to the flying full back who had another routine dot-down under the posts. (Kandy 49-14 Navy)
Navy replied with two regulation dot-downs as Kandy emptied their bench to give them some game time. Mohommed Absal went in the left corner while Saliya Handapangoda did the same minutes later. (Kandy 49-26 Navy)
The game ended with three more tries being scored, two came in favor of Kandy while a solitary consolation try came for Navy. Danushka Ranjan took the lead as the highest try scorer of the league yet again as Chathura Senevirathne went over for Navy followed up by Jason Dissanayake. (Kandy 63-31 Navy)
Full Time – Kandy 63(8T 8C 1PT) – 31(5T 3C) Navy
- ThePapare.com Player of the Match – Thilina Wijesinghe (Kandy SC)
Tries from Thilina Wijesinghe (4), Jason Dissanayake (1), Lawanga Perera (1), Danushka Ranjan (1) and Heshan Kalhara (1)
Conversions from Thilina Wijesinghe (8)
Tries from Mohommed Absal (2), Saliya Handapangoda (1), Buddhima Piyarathne (1), and Chathura Senevirathne (1)
Conversions from Thilina Weerasinghe (2), and Chathura Senevirathne (1)