Isipathana College will take on St. Peter’s College as the two teams battle it out, this time around for the Dialog Schools’ Rugby Knockouts 2023, with a second chance to deny the Pete’s of Silverware.
Isipathana College v St. Peter’s College at Sugathadasa Stadium on the 10th of September from 4.00 pm
The Pete’s faced their toughest test last weekend, while Isipathana cruised through to the final.
Isipathana College didn’t have it all their way in the first half against Zahira, as the Green Machine were in check during the first 35 of the game.
It was a different game in the second half as Isipathana bounced back, ending the game with a commanding score line, 39-10.
St. Peter’s, on the other hand, faced a similar dilemma taking on St. Joseph’s in the second semifinal. Sanath Martis and co. were under the pump for the majority of the game.
St. Joseph’s College led at lemons; however, they missed plenty of vital opportunities, which, in the end, came back to bite them. The Josphians were in a position to put the Peterites to the sword, but the lack of finishing meant the Bamba Brigade bounced back in Champion fashion — with a bit of luck on their side — to win the game and retain the Rev. Fr. Basil Weeratunga Shield.
THE GRAND FINALE
Isipathana will be raring to go as they receive a second chance to correct their errors as they take on the Champions.
St. Peter’s will no doubt know that they will require a much-improved performance from the semi-final if they are to do the double this season.
With the weather deteriorating over the past few days, we cannot expect anything better and wet weather would only make the task all that complicated for the two teams to play their usual fast-moving, expansive game.
The teams, however, would need to evolve, and this time around, Isipathana will no doubt need new ideas and methods in which to penetrate the solid SPC defence that has held firm this year.
Isipathana will also look up to their pivots, Naveen and Rinesh, but Zumri’s influence will be what’s most looked up to after he failed to have as much as the impact he would’ve liked to in the League final.
For Peter’s, on the other hand, Jayawickrama and De Mel will have to step up for one last time this season as they take on arch-rivals Isipathana. Skipper Madugaspe will be the man in the forwards, as they will look up to him for leadership.
Isipathana will be aiming to win their 14th Schools’ Rugby Knockouts while Peter’s will be seeking to make it 8. (Stats from 1978-2022)
Prediction: Peter’s to win by 7-points