Dharmaraja Marches Forward through Sumangala

Dialog Schools Rugby League 2024

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Dharmaraja College vs Sri Sumangala College

In a rain-soaked and slippery encounter at Bogambara Stadium, Dharmaraja College Kandy emerged victorious against Sri Sumangala College with a final score of 32 (5 Tries, 2 Conversions, 1 Penalty) – 12 (2 Tries, 1 Conversion).

Both teams came into the match seeking redemption after losses in their opening games, making this a crucial clash in the second week of the Dialog Schools Rugby League season. 

The match was a stop-start affair, plagued by numerous knock-ons and lineouts due to the challenging conditions. The heavy rain made the ground muddy and slippery, leading to handling errors and a fragmented game. Despite the conditions, Dharmaraja College’s heavier forwards made a significant impact, ultimately tipping the scales in their favor. 

The game started cautiously, with both teams struggling to adapt to the wet conditions. The first points came in the 15th minute when Dharmaraja’s Sadeesha Weerawamsa successfully kicked a penalty after a series of poorly executed moves from both sides. This gave Dharmaraja a 3-0 lead, reflecting the tough start for both teams as they adjusted to the muddy field. (Dharmaraja 03-00 Sri Sumangala) 

Sri Sumangala College fought back valiantly and managed to score a try of their own. Their effort was rewarded when their prop-forward Yasiru Rathnayake intercepted a kick meant to clear the line in the Dharmaraja red zone. He gained around 20-25 meters before going down in a tackle. After a couple of phases, Rathnayake picked and dropped over the whitewash, giving Sumangala the lead at the 20-minute mark. The conversion was unsuccessful as it was neatly charged down by the Dharmaraja runners, narrowing the gap and keeping the contest alive. (Dharmaraja 03-05 Sri Sumangala) 

Despite the resurgence from Sri Sumangala, Dharmaraja continued to leverage their forward strength. The heavier pack was relentless in their attack, creating space and opportunities. Dharmaraja got a line-out just outside the 22-meter line. They formed a rolling maul and gained around 10-15 meters before being taken down illegally. With the advantage, Dharmaraja went over the line after about 10 phases near the try-line. The conversion was unsuccessful. (Dharmaraja 08-05 Sri Sumangala) 

Sri Sumangala responded quickly with another try, taking advantage of a lapse in Dharmaraja’s defense. They got a scrum outside the 22-meter line. The ball was sent through the hands before taking it into contact by the centers, inches close to the posts. The Dharmaraja defense was guilty of leaving the fringes open as scrum-half Shashika Bandara spotted the gap and dived over under the posts. The try was converted successfully, putting Sri Sumangala back in the lead. (Dharmaraja 08-12 Sri Sumangala) 

Dharmaraja, however, regained the lead just before halftime. Nimsha Peiris scored his first try with a burst through the side of the ruck, gaining 5 meters and falling over the try-line. Another powerful display from their forwards saw Dharmaraja score this try, maintaining their shape and beautifully setting phase after phase. Although the conversion was missed, Dharmaraja went into halftime leading. (Dharmaraja 13-12 Sri Sumangala) 

Half-Time: Dharmaraja College 13 (2T 1P) – 12 (2T 1C) Sri Sumangala College 

After halftime, Dharmaraja College came out with renewed vigor. They extended their lead early in the second half with another try, this time successfully converted. Dharmaraja maintained possession through their forward pack, setting up another series of pick-and-go phases. Advantage came for Dharmaraja a couple of times in this move, which was converted into a try. Finally, after a long passage of play, Nimsha Peiris picked and dropped over the whitewash for the second time in the game. (Dharmaraja 20-12 Sri Sumangala) 

The heavier forwards of Dharmaraja College continued to exert their dominance. In the 54th minute, they got a defensive scrum inside Sri Sumangala’s 22-meter zone. The Sri Sumangala No. 8 broke off the back of the scrum and set up camp just in front of the 5-meter line. The Sumangala scrum-half fed his fly-half with the ball, but the resulting kick was charged down by Prabuddika Madhushan, who eventually touched down over the try-line after a series of errors from Sumangala. The conversion was successful, further extending their lead. (Dharmaraja 27-12 Sri Sumangala) 

Dharmaraja College’s relentless pressure paid off once more as they executed another well-organized rolling maul to gain 20 meters and then, taking the quick tap, scored their fourth and final try in the 65th minute. This secured them a bonus point. The final try went to the captain and No. 8 Nimsha Peiris, who completed the hat trick to sign off a good day on the field for Dharmaraja. The conversion was missed, but the scoreline was decisive. (Dharmaraja 32-12 Sri Sumangala) 

Despite their best efforts, Sri Sumangala could not overcome the physical dominance of Dharmaraja’s forwards. The challenging conditions further hindered their ability to mount a successful comeback. 

St. Peter’s College scrum-half Salith Gallage was awarded the NDB Bank Player of the Match for scoring a try and laying the groundwork for two other tries in this encounter, along with his brilliant defensive work. 

Full Time – Dharmaraja College 32(5T 2C 1P) – 12 (2T 1C) Sri Sumangala College 

  • NDB Bank Player of the Match:- Nimsha Peris (DRCK) 

Points Breakdown 

Dharmaraja: Nimsha Peiris 15 points (3 Tries), Sadeesha Weerawansa 7 points (2 conversions, 1 Penalty ) , Prabuddika Madhushan 5 points (1 Try) , Ravindu Wickramage 5 points (1 Try) 

 

Sri Sumangala: Shashika Bandara 5 points (1 Try) , Yasiru Rathnayake 5 points (1 Try), Nazar Adeel 2 points (1 Conversion)