Wesley into Knockout Final!

Milo Knockouts Presidents Trophy 2019

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Wesley College vs Vidyartha College
Wesley College secured a rather hard-fought victory against a resilient Vidyartha College outfit, to reserve their spot in the Finals of the Milo Knockouts President’s Trophy 2019. After leading 19 points to 13 at half-time, the Double Blues went on to win the game 36 – 25 at the Royal Complex.

Tharindu Walpitage kick-started the game deep inside the Vidyartha half as the Double Blues welcomed the Kandy school back into ‘A’ division rugby with a first minute try in the corner. After swinging the ball from left to right, space opened up for Number 11 Theekshana Vithanage who drew first blood for Wesley. 

The next few minutes saw both teams take turns in running the ball, but, only the Wesleyites managed to make it count as winger Kavinda Perera and flanker Sritheysh Thavarajah found themselves over the whitewash even before the clock had struck the 20th minute. 

But thereon, the Double Blues lost their momentum as the Tigers mounted well executed ploys to weaken the Wesley defence. That’s when the breakthrough for Vidyartha sparked up as they bridged the gap to just a scores limit. Prop Forward #1 Tharindu Ridmaka scored the first try for his side as Kaveesha Kaluarachchi added another 9 points through a conversion and two penalties, just before lemons. 

Half-time: VCK trailed 13 – 19 WC 

The second-half got underway after Tharindu Hasith barged through the blind side from 5 meters away and dove over the try line, extending Wesley’s lead, Walpitage struck a brilliant kick from the corner adding the extras, hoping to keep his side safe. 

But, the Vidyarthians made life harder for the favourites. Kavindana Perera and Samuel Ogbebor went on to score two more tries and seemingly added the last nail in the coffin, however, that wasn’t the case. 

Vidyartha College who were down 13 – 36 with under 10 minutes of play remaining, managed to narrow Wesley’s lead to just 11 points after scoring two tries in quick succession. Pacey winger #14 Pathum Jayakody sprinted over to score in the 63rd minute, as Skipper, Kavishka Bandara scored his last ever try for his Alma Mater a few minutes later. However, as the final few seconds approached handling errors let the Kandy school down with much credit to the wall-like Welsey College defence. 

As the Double Blues secure their spot in the Finals of the 2019 Milo Knockouts Presidents Trophy, Vidyartha College bid farewell to their run in the 2019 XV a-side schools rugby season. A splendid performance by the Wesleyites earned them their place in the final as their #7 Dexter Goonethilake was adjudged Player of the Match for his exceptional game play and awareness throughout the game.

Full time: VCK lost 25 (3T, 2C, 2P) – 36 (5T, 3C) WC

Score Breakdown VCK
Tries: Kavishka Bandara, Pathum Jayakody, Tharindu Ridmaka
Kicks: Kaveesha Kaluarachchi 2C, 2P

Score Breakdown WC
Tries: Kavindana Perera 2, Tharindu Hasith, Samuel Ogbebor, Sritheysh Thavarajah
Conversions: Tharindu Walpitage 3C
Bookings: Kavindana Perera