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Sri Lankan Rugby

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Sun, 08 Oct 2017, 10:06

Victorious St. Joseph’s to tour South Africa

http://www.thepapare.com/victorious-st- ... th-africa/

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Mon, 09 Oct 2017, 06:26

Image

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby gibbs » Mon, 09 Oct 2017, 13:04

National Sevens players to get contracts

Image

Sri Lanka Rugby (SLR) is on the verge of finalizing the procedure to award national contracts for the sevens squad ahead of the third and final leg of the Asia Sevens Series.

In lieu with Sri Lanka Rugby’s perception of developing the shorter format of the game, the initiation of player contracts will play a crucial role in retaining the talent within the system.

Currently, Sri Lanka plays over five international sevens tournaments a year during the time period between April and November. In a such a scenario, the players train for more than six months in between the fifteen’s season in order to be eligible for selection.

Speaking to ThePapare, CEO of SLR added that there is work in progress with the Ministry of Sports to provide contracts for the players.


“We have spoken with the ministry as well on this and it will not be a huge amount but it will be a start” added CEO Priyantha Ekanayake on the development.

“We plan to start here and it can later be developed,”he further added.



Not limiting it to only the men’s team, players from the Sri Lanka national women’s squad will also be eligible for full time contracts under the new system that SLR intends to implement.

Sri Lanka already has its own development squad for the national sevens that has the talents of the prospective players who graduate from the under 20 level. While these players are listed in the national squad, the initiation of contracts should motivate the players to stay in the system.


Image
F The Women’s team train throughout the year and SLR intends to develop the Women’s structure in the sport in the coming years

The move by the national body comes in during an important time in the sport’s landscape where Sri Lanka is looking at options to expand and play the sport at a global level in terms of sevens.

This year’s Sri Lanka national squad for the Asia Sevens series had the likes of six under 23 players accounting for half of the entire squad which gives a clear indication that there is potential from the players who make it out of the school’s circuit.

The list of players entitled to receive contracts is yet to be finalized.

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby vino_93 » Tue, 10 Oct 2017, 06:17

Good news !

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Thu, 12 Oct 2017, 13:47

The rugby pros from the Pacific Islands who united to help vulnerable players

There are now more than 600 players with Pacific Island heritage playing in Europe and the association is advising players from as far away as Romania, Russia and Sri Lanka

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/behin ... ng-players

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Thu, 12 Oct 2017, 13:49

After winning 48 caps in all, Miller retired in 2006, returning to Gaelic football which he had played with great success as a youngster.Since retiring from that sport, he has coached in a number of different schools and clubs, even working as the director of rugby at Trinity College in Kandy, Sri Lanka.

http://www.sixnationsrugby.com/mobile/e ... H1bFsOl.97

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Sun, 15 Oct 2017, 13:35

Sri Lanka beat The second leg champs South Korea with ease 22-5 and took the 3rd place in SL leg ,an the only try South Korea scored came of from a forward pass. surprised why they did not used the TMO when it is in place for these kinds of tries . a good leg for Sri Lanka

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Mon, 16 Oct 2017, 23:56

NZ Rugby to assist SL Rugby

Minister of Development Strategy and International Trade, Malik Samarawickrama, who was also a former President of Sri Lanka Rugby, on an official visit to New Zealand recently, had met officials of New Zealand Rugby and discussed about a potential partnership between the two countries. NZ Rugby has followed up with a proposal to assist in the growth of rugby in Sri Lanka.

Minister Samarawickrama hopes to discuss the proposal with Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekera, Minister Harin Fernando and Sri Lanka Rugby Officials. The areas New Zealand Rugby and All Blacks could collaborate with Sri Lanka Rugby are to provide resources and experience to accelerate our ambition of becoming a regional powerhouse. The areas include Game Development Strategy, All Blacks branded Coaching Clinics and Tools, Competition and Professional Rugby Structures, Game understanding and educational content for fans, Team exchanges and placement opportunities and Sending of New Zealand Development teams to Sri Lanka, stated a press release.

Samarawickrama was hosted by New Zealand's Minister of Trade, Todd McClay, where the possibilities of a strategic economic partnership between the two countries were also discussed.

http://www.ceylontoday.lk/print20170401CT20170630.php?id=32244

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Tue, 17 Oct 2017, 19:30

Sri Lanka at home; hosting international matches and tournaments

Sri Lanka Rugby Football Union (now called Sri Lanka Rugby) is in the process of hosting another international Rugby tournament, the 3rd Leg of the Asia 7's series, for the 3rd consecutive year.

When the first Rugby international was played in Sri Lanka, then Ceylon, in September 1907, between the New Zealand 'All Blacks' and the All Ceylon team, interestingly, the match was organised by the CH&FC, being the 1st Rugby club in the island.

The Ceylon Rugby Football Union (CRFU) was not in existence at the time. Upon arrival, the visitors, to whom the hosts had agreed to pay a guarantee fee of US$ 50, were gladly welcomed by the CH&FC officials including its President R. Davidson.

The All Blacks were "passing through Colombo by ship, en route to England, to play the Northern Union."

According to newspaper reports, the visitors "were driven from the Colombo Jetty to the Havelock Race Course by motor car.

A crowd of about 4,000 witnessed the game.

On entering the field the All Blacks were cheered by the Ceylon team.

The visitors returned the compliment and sang their war song."

The All Blacks vs All Ceylon match was played on Sept.12, 1907, at the CH&FC grounds situated within the Havelock Racecourse.

The dominance of the All-European CH&FC in the Rugby arena at the time, was evident, as the All Ceylon team had 8 players from the CH&FC, including the captain A.F. West.

The Rresult: All Blacks 33, All Ceylon 6 (2 tries). Referee: J. Lochore.

Commenting on the match result the "Ceylon Sports Annual" said: "The All Blacks were infinitely superior – the acme of combination – different parts performing their functions almost with regularity of a well-oiled machine. Nothing like such an exhibition of Rugby had ever been witnessed in the island."

Anyhow, the All Blacks' visit resulted in an unexpected move by the mother union – the English Rugby Football Union, which banned its member countries from playing Rugby in Ceylon.

This prohibition was imposed because Ceylon, considered amateurs, had persuaded a professional team to play for a guarantee payment!

The formation of the CRFU in 1908 was a direct consequence of this move.

The 1st occasion the CRFU hosted a foreign team was in 1910, when the 2nd Leicester Regiment stationed in Madras, came on a 3-match tour, being the second overseas team to play Rugby on Ceylonese soil.

The visitors' 1st match was on the day of their arrival, against a Combined Colombo XV, which they won handsomely by 27-0.

"The Ceylon Independent", a Colombo-based broadsheet priced at 5 cents per copy, hailed the performance of the visiting team: "Since the 'All Blacks', captained by Hercules Wright, played in Colombo in 1907, and gave the local folk an insight into some of the finer points of Rugger, no other touring team has played in the island. So the visit of the Leicester Regimental XV was eagerly looked forward to by all votaries of the game, and those who witnessed the opening match of their tour yesterday afternoon (Aug.16, 1910) were full of admiration for the fine exhibition given by the visiting team."

This tour also marked the first ever Rugby advertisement by the CRFU, published in August 1910, which read: "Rugby Football – Ceylon vs 2nd Leicester Regiment on Saturday, Aug.20 at Havelock Racecourse. Kick off – 5 pm sharp. Admission: Re.1. --Ladies Free. Chairs will be provided at an extra charge of 50 cents per person."

The CRFU's maiden experience in organising and hosting a major Rugby tournament came off through a hurried arrangement.

It was the time the All India Rugby Football Tournament held a supreme spot in the island's Rugby calendar.

In 1949, it was Bombay Gymkhana's turn to host the tourney.

But due to unavoidable circumstances they were not in a position to do so, and the CRFU responded quickly and succeeded.

The CRFU fielded two teams, All Ceylon and the Ceylon Barbarians, and had the final trial match at Kelani Valley (KV) grounds Talduwa, a few miles away from Colombo, to select the best teams.

Colombo newspapers called this event a Rugby fiesta. To quote a couple of newspaper previews and reviews: "A week hence, the CRFU will be staging the biggest Rugger tournament ever to be held in Ceylon. Never has there been such general interest centered in a Rugger match in Ceylon since the British RF team played in Colombo on their way home from New Zealand, a long while ago, as in today's final on the Racecourse."

In the final, All Ceylon led by Lyn Simpson narrowly defeated Calcutta FC 5-3, to regain the coveted All India trophy.

The following day, a couple of historic Rugby photographs appeared on the front page of a leading daily broadsheet, a group photograph of the victorious All Ceylon team and also another photograph of Prime Minister D.S. Senanayake watching the match with CRFU President E.F.N. Gratiaen, seated beside him. Perhaps this could be considered the first instance where Rugby was given prominent coverage as a lead story on Page 1 of a prominent national newspaper.

On the eve of the commencement of the tourney, the CRFU hosted a "Men Only" cocktail party at the Royal Colombo Golf Club, in honour of the visiting teams.

Honorary membership of several elite local "Clubs" has been granted to the players and officials of the visiting teams during the All India Rugby week. Then, during the grand final between All Ceylon and the Calcutta FC, radio commentary was relayed from the start to finish, from the grounds, 'for the benefit of those who were unable to witness the game' ."

In providing accommodation for the visitors from Madras, Calcutta, Bombay and Karachi, the CRFU followed established procedure, an age-old practice in India, causing no monetary burden on the host Union.

The host Union found a good number of Rugby enthusiasts, well-wishers, players and administrators who volunteered to host a member or 2 from the visiting teams, at their own cost.

Veteran Rugby official Ashram Sookias of Armenian RFC, India, once told me that, during his visit to Colombo with the Bengal Tigers team in 1952, for the All India tourney, they were accommodated at the Orient Club, at the expense of several local Rugby enthusiasts, while some of the team officials were housed in private bungalows.

It took nearly another two-and-a-half decades for the governing body to host an international Rugby tournament.

In 1974, Sri Lanka RFU had the privilege of hosting the 4th Asian Rugby Championship (ARC), popularly called Rugby Asiad.

Local Rugby reporters called the tourney "the biggest sporting event to be staged in the island until then." Commander E.L. Matthysz who was then the President of the Asian Rugby Football Union (ARFU), mentioned that "Rugby spectators in Sri Lanka are looking forward to witnessing the participation of other member countries for the 1st time in competitive Rugby on our soil."

The commencement of the tournament scheduled for Saturday, 16 Nov.16, 1974, was delayed by the "7-hour curfew imposed in the Colombo District".

Anyhow, the tourney commenced on the following day, and as per sports page reports, "it was a glorious day for Sri Lanka Rugby as Sri Lanka beat Singapore by 10-4, with a tremendous surge of genuine enthusiasm in the final 10 minutes." Led by Indrajit Coomaraswamy, Sri Lanka thereafter defeated Laos 39-3 and Malaysia 12-6 to become a finalist. The brief write-up that appeared in the print souvenir of the tourney, classified the Skipper of the Sri Lanka team as follows: "Indrajit Coomaraswamy. School: Harrow. Club: Ceylonese Rugby & Football Club. Represented Sri Lanka at the 3rd ARC and against the Bosuns, London Welsh, Emus and Paris XV. Position: Flanker. Occupation: Staff Officer- Central Bank of Ceylon."

At the end, Japan clinched the championship title with a 44-6 victory over the host country, amidst heavy rain. Sports historian S.S. Perera remarked, that the "grounds were more a lake than a Rugger field."

The SLRFU's maiden attempt in organising a major Rugby tournament was greatly appreciated and duly rewarded. ARFU Sec.Gen. and Japan RFU Chairman Shigeru (Shiggy) Konno, "congratulated the SLRFU for the good administration and arrangements which prevailed throughout the tournament."

During the tournament, he also made an exclusive announcement, offering "a 2-week training course to one of the local coaches, with all expenses, including air travel to be met by Japan RFU."

According to another newspaper report, "he (Shiggy Konno) said Sri Lanka's Rugby has improved tremendously since they arrived in the island.

He attributed this to the tournament atmosphere. He also spoke highly of the match arrangements."

But, Australian RFU President Bill Mcloughlin, who was in Sri Lanka on the invitation of the SLRFU, for the 4th Asiad, cautioned: "Spectator violence is creeping into your Rugger matches. This is a bad sign. The local Union must enforce stricter crowd control to prevent such situation." Anyhow, he paid "tribute to the organisers of the competition saying, the tournament was well organised."

The SLRFU organised and conducted its first ever international 7s competition on Oct.1-2, 1994. It was played not at the 'Twickenham' of local Rugby but at 'Wembley' of local Football, Sugathadasa Stadium, an alien arena for Rugby until then.

Well known Rugby stalwart Y.C. Chang was the Chairman of the Organising Committee, with Jeff Matheson as its Technical Director.

Teams from Australia, Bulgaria, USA, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Wales, Arabian Gulf, New Zealand, Netherlands and Fiji, along with the host nation, scrummed down in this 2-day competition which comprised foreign club teams as well as respective Rugby unions' representative squads.

The team tagged "The Islanders- Fiji 2" made up of the best Fijian Rugby talent available in Sri Lanka at the time, and our own Chandrishan Perera, thrilled and stunned the packed Stadium with their delectable display of open Rugby, making good use of their speed, power and pace to lay hands on the championship trophy.

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Wed, 18 Oct 2017, 15:40

thepapare.com
CR appoint Fereti Verebula as new head coach
Romario De Silva

Image

Experienced Fiji National, Fereti Verebula has been handed the reigns at CR & FC following a dismal league season in 2016/17.

Fiji National Fereti Verabula will replace former Scotland rugby National Ben MacDougall after a disappointing season at the helm of CR & FC.

Under MacDougall CR managed a top four finish but a drop from a year on meant the CR officials decided against retaining the League and Union star for the Fijian.

Army SC impressed under the watchful eye of Verebula, earning his first the call from the Sri Lanka Rugby union 15s side and then CR & FC.

Prior to arriving in Sri Lanka, Verebula has been assistant coach to Fijian national side including the women. He has coached the Fijian Warriors and has had stints in USA, New Zealand and finally in China preparing a side for the Youth Olympics.

Verebula took the reins at Army SC in 2015/16 and even though his team finished 6th in the two seasons he was in charge, Fereti managed to bring a certain swagger into the Army game and his loss will be dearly felt.

His Sri Lankan exploits were rather heartbreaking as the Sri Lanka 15-a-side team failed in their final hurdle to Malaysia, meaning the Lankan’s had to settle for a runner up position.

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Thu, 19 Oct 2017, 04:20

thepapare.com
CR & FC down new-look CH & FC to take Captain’s game
Image
The Longdon Place club, CR & FC took home a 27-14 victory against CH & FC in the traditional Captain’s fixture that was worked off today at the CR & FC grounds.

Getting a new life after two disappointing seasons, the Colombo Hockey and Football Club (CH & FC) is finally taking shape as a competitive outfit having recruited the services of notable talent such as Lee Keegal, Sathya Ranathunga and Henry Terrance while contracting fresh schoolboy talent.

The game kicked off with CH & FC drawing first blood off the boot of Samuel Maduwantha. The former St. Anthony’s kicking marvel making his club rugby start didn’t fail to disappoint kicking a 25m penalty (3-0).

Fresh from the Asia Sevens, vice-captain for CR & FC Tarinda Ratwatte kicked the equalizer soon after but with CH & FC awarded another penalty for a late tackle, Samuel Maduwantha made sure his team once again gets the lead with another 30m penalty.

It was a pre-season tester for CR & FC who opted to give game time to their new recruits.

With the heavy physical contest in the middle, it took the hosts 30 minutes to score the first try. Breaking out from the 5m scrum, Omalka Gunarathane was unstoppable to the try line with his signature ward off. Ratwatte failed to convert.

Soon after the restart, the CR & FC players were to work their way up for a second with the help of their forwards as Kokila Sammandaperuma did the scoring duties. The second also went unconverted.

Halftime: CR & FC 13 – CH & FC 6

The Gymkhana club players struggled in playing the ball wide despite having experienced players such as Anurada Herath, Lee Keegal and Chula Susantha in their three-quarter line up.

Maduwantha however had the chance of cutting the deficit by three more when he slotted another penalty through to take the score up to 9 points.

CH’s mistakes cost them as continuous infringements in the breakdown in their defending 5m territory saw referee Dinka Peiris award a penalty try for CR & FC. (20-6)

After a long wait, CH & FC were finally able to score off a 5m penalty with the help of their forwards pack. The ex-sailor Sathya Ranathunga did the scoring duties. The conversion didn’t sail through.

Coming late in the match, Reeza Raffaideen’s explosive sprint saw Thisala Karunathilake converting it to valuable points for CR scoring right of the goal posts to finish the pre-season game on a victorious note.

“It was a good win. Gave our new guys the chance to play and get good game time before the season starts. Hope we can make our mistakes and look ahead to the league” added winning captain of CR & FC Kavindu Perera

“The result was not the important outcome but our team bonded well. The team is still fresh and think we can take the positives out of it” added coach of CH & FC Tavita Tulagese’ Laga.

It was good win for CR & FC but CH & FC shouldn’t be too disappointed with their performance and will no doubt take it as a learning curve ahead of the Dialog Rugby League kickoff.

>>Dialog Rugby League Starts November 3rd. Find out more here<<

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Thu, 19 Oct 2017, 13:16

thepapare.com
Dialog Transfer Market: Keegal to CH; Darling to Kandy
Inshaf Caffoor
Image

With less than two weeks to go for the Dialog Club Rugby season, the clubs are currently in the process of finalizing their signings for the upcoming 2017/18 season that will kick off on the 3rd of November 2017.

According to Sri Lanka Rugby, the clubs are given time until 48 hours before the kick off of the league to finalize their signings for the season.

We take a look at two important signings that defending champions Kandy Sports Club and CH & FC have made for the season.

Making his way back to Colombo after four years, Navy SC and Sri Lanka national represent Lee Keegal has been headhunted by CH & FC for the upcoming Dialog Rugby League.

The former Peterite speedster who represented Navy Sports Club soon after his school rugby stint has been a regular in the national fifteen’s side and represented the country this year at the Asia Division I Championship that was held in Malaysia. Playing for Navy, Keegal was a part of the league winning outfit in 2014.

Keegal made his debut for the new club in the Captain’s game, which is the traditional encounter played between CR & FC and CH & FC and was impressive on debut.

Speaking to ThePapare.com after the game, the former Navy center, is delighted to be back playing for a Colombo club.

“After four and a half years I am back in Colombo to play for CH & FC and it is an exciting time with a new bunch of players”

“It is an exciting time to play in CH & FC, a club that has a lot of history in it and with the new team and I believe we can have a good season”

Playing at inside center, Keegal is tagged to be one of the best in the country in that position. Action from the Navy v Army match from the 2016/2017 season

Kandy Strengthens their front line

Kandy Sports Club have strengthened their front-row signing Ashan Darling after veteran prop forward Kishore Jehan decided to hang his boots last season. The Havelock SC prop forward has been phenomenal in his two year club rugby stint.
Darling has been a fierce front row for Havelock SC in the past two seasons

Playing his school rugby at Isipathana College, Darling was a part of triple champion Isipathana College outfit of 2014. Making his entry to the professional club rugby arena, young Darling was given the starting number in Havelock Sports Club soon after his school rugby stint.

Since his debut at the Park club, the prop forward has been impressive and that earned him a maiden national call for the fifteen a side this year when the Tuskers toured Malaysia for the Asia Division I Rugby Championship.

Darling will be joining his former school and club team mate Ganuka Dissanayake in the front row of the Kandy line up.

He already made his start in Kandy colours in the concluded Asia Western Club Championship but is yet to represent Kandy in the Dialog Club Rugby season.

Dialog Rugby League starts 3rd November. Find out more information here – Dialog Rugby League Fixtures Released, Kandy face CH on Week one

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby Immenso » Thu, 19 Oct 2017, 22:03

kush123 wrote:Sri Lanka at home; hosting international matches and tournaments

Sri Lanka Rugby Football Union (now called Sri Lanka Rugby) is in the process of hosting another international Rugby tournament, the 3rd Leg of the Asia 7's series, for the 3rd consecutive year.

When the first Rugby international was played in Sri Lanka, then Ceylon, in September 1907, between the New Zealand 'All Blacks' and the All Ceylon team, interestingly, the match was organised by the CH&FC, being the 1st Rugby club in the island.

The Ceylon Rugby Football Union (CRFU) was not in existence at the time. Upon arrival, the visitors, to whom the hosts had agreed to pay a guarantee fee of US$ 50, were gladly welcomed by the CH&FC officials including its President R. Davidson.

The All Blacks were "passing through Colombo by ship, en route to England, to play the Northern Union."

According to newspaper reports, the visitors "were driven from the Colombo Jetty to the Havelock Race Course by motor car.

A crowd of about 4,000 witnessed the game.

On entering the field the All Blacks were cheered by the Ceylon team.

The visitors returned the compliment and sang their war song."

The All Blacks vs All Ceylon match was played on Sept.12, 1907, at the CH&FC grounds situated within the Havelock Racecourse.

The dominance of the All-European CH&FC in the Rugby arena at the time, was evident, as the All Ceylon team had 8 players from the CH&FC, including the captain A.F. West.

The Rresult: All Blacks 33, All Ceylon 6 (2 tries). Referee: J. Lochore.

Commenting on the match result the "Ceylon Sports Annual" said: "The All Blacks were infinitely superior – the acme of combination – different parts performing their functions almost with regularity of a well-oiled machine. Nothing like such an exhibition of Rugby had ever been witnessed in the island."

Anyhow, the All Blacks' visit resulted in an unexpected move by the mother union – the English Rugby Football Union, which banned its member countries from playing Rugby in Ceylon.

This prohibition was imposed because Ceylon, considered amateurs, had persuaded a professional team to play for a guarantee payment!

The formation of the CRFU in 1908 was a direct consequence of this move.

The 1st occasion the CRFU hosted a foreign team was in 1910, when the 2nd Leicester Regiment stationed in Madras, came on a 3-match tour, being the second overseas team to play Rugby on Ceylonese soil.

The visitors' 1st match was on the day of their arrival, against a Combined Colombo XV, which they won handsomely by 27-0.

"The Ceylon Independent", a Colombo-based broadsheet priced at 5 cents per copy, hailed the performance of the visiting team: "Since the 'All Blacks', captained by Hercules Wright, played in Colombo in 1907, and gave the local folk an insight into some of the finer points of Rugger, no other touring team has played in the island. So the visit of the Leicester Regimental XV was eagerly looked forward to by all votaries of the game, and those who witnessed the opening match of their tour yesterday afternoon (Aug.16, 1910) were full of admiration for the fine exhibition given by the visiting team."

This tour also marked the first ever Rugby advertisement by the CRFU, published in August 1910, which read: "Rugby Football – Ceylon vs 2nd Leicester Regiment on Saturday, Aug.20 at Havelock Racecourse. Kick off – 5 pm sharp. Admission: Re.1. --Ladies Free. Chairs will be provided at an extra charge of 50 cents per person."

The CRFU's maiden experience in organising and hosting a major Rugby tournament came off through a hurried arrangement.

It was the time the All India Rugby Football Tournament held a supreme spot in the island's Rugby calendar.

In 1949, it was Bombay Gymkhana's turn to host the tourney.

But due to unavoidable circumstances they were not in a position to do so, and the CRFU responded quickly and succeeded.

The CRFU fielded two teams, All Ceylon and the Ceylon Barbarians, and had the final trial match at Kelani Valley (KV) grounds Talduwa, a few miles away from Colombo, to select the best teams.

Colombo newspapers called this event a Rugby fiesta. To quote a couple of newspaper previews and reviews: "A week hence, the CRFU will be staging the biggest Rugger tournament ever to be held in Ceylon. Never has there been such general interest centered in a Rugger match in Ceylon since the British RF team played in Colombo on their way home from New Zealand, a long while ago, as in today's final on the Racecourse."

In the final, All Ceylon led by Lyn Simpson narrowly defeated Calcutta FC 5-3, to regain the coveted All India trophy.

The following day, a couple of historic Rugby photographs appeared on the front page of a leading daily broadsheet, a group photograph of the victorious All Ceylon team and also another photograph of Prime Minister D.S. Senanayake watching the match with CRFU President E.F.N. Gratiaen, seated beside him. Perhaps this could be considered the first instance where Rugby was given prominent coverage as a lead story on Page 1 of a prominent national newspaper.

On the eve of the commencement of the tourney, the CRFU hosted a "Men Only" cocktail party at the Royal Colombo Golf Club, in honour of the visiting teams.

Honorary membership of several elite local "Clubs" has been granted to the players and officials of the visiting teams during the All India Rugby week. Then, during the grand final between All Ceylon and the Calcutta FC, radio commentary was relayed from the start to finish, from the grounds, 'for the benefit of those who were unable to witness the game' ."

In providing accommodation for the visitors from Madras, Calcutta, Bombay and Karachi, the CRFU followed established procedure, an age-old practice in India, causing no monetary burden on the host Union.

The host Union found a good number of Rugby enthusiasts, well-wishers, players and administrators who volunteered to host a member or 2 from the visiting teams, at their own cost.

Veteran Rugby official Ashram Sookias of Armenian RFC, India, once told me that, during his visit to Colombo with the Bengal Tigers team in 1952, for the All India tourney, they were accommodated at the Orient Club, at the expense of several local Rugby enthusiasts, while some of the team officials were housed in private bungalows.

It took nearly another two-and-a-half decades for the governing body to host an international Rugby tournament.

In 1974, Sri Lanka RFU had the privilege of hosting the 4th Asian Rugby Championship (ARC), popularly called Rugby Asiad.

Local Rugby reporters called the tourney "the biggest sporting event to be staged in the island until then." Commander E.L. Matthysz who was then the President of the Asian Rugby Football Union (ARFU), mentioned that "Rugby spectators in Sri Lanka are looking forward to witnessing the participation of other member countries for the 1st time in competitive Rugby on our soil."

The commencement of the tournament scheduled for Saturday, 16 Nov.16, 1974, was delayed by the "7-hour curfew imposed in the Colombo District".

Anyhow, the tourney commenced on the following day, and as per sports page reports, "it was a glorious day for Sri Lanka Rugby as Sri Lanka beat Singapore by 10-4, with a tremendous surge of genuine enthusiasm in the final 10 minutes." Led by Indrajit Coomaraswamy, Sri Lanka thereafter defeated Laos 39-3 and Malaysia 12-6 to become a finalist. The brief write-up that appeared in the print souvenir of the tourney, classified the Skipper of the Sri Lanka team as follows: "Indrajit Coomaraswamy. School: Harrow. Club: Ceylonese Rugby & Football Club. Represented Sri Lanka at the 3rd ARC and against the Bosuns, London Welsh, Emus and Paris XV. Position: Flanker. Occupation: Staff Officer- Central Bank of Ceylon."

At the end, Japan clinched the championship title with a 44-6 victory over the host country, amidst heavy rain. Sports historian S.S. Perera remarked, that the "grounds were more a lake than a Rugger field."

The SLRFU's maiden attempt in organising a major Rugby tournament was greatly appreciated and duly rewarded. ARFU Sec.Gen. and Japan RFU Chairman Shigeru (Shiggy) Konno, "congratulated the SLRFU for the good administration and arrangements which prevailed throughout the tournament."

During the tournament, he also made an exclusive announcement, offering "a 2-week training course to one of the local coaches, with all expenses, including air travel to be met by Japan RFU."

According to another newspaper report, "he (Shiggy Konno) said Sri Lanka's Rugby has improved tremendously since they arrived in the island.

He attributed this to the tournament atmosphere. He also spoke highly of the match arrangements."

But, Australian RFU President Bill Mcloughlin, who was in Sri Lanka on the invitation of the SLRFU, for the 4th Asiad, cautioned: "Spectator violence is creeping into your Rugger matches. This is a bad sign. The local Union must enforce stricter crowd control to prevent such situation." Anyhow, he paid "tribute to the organisers of the competition saying, the tournament was well organised."

The SLRFU organised and conducted its first ever international 7s competition on Oct.1-2, 1994. It was played not at the 'Twickenham' of local Rugby but at 'Wembley' of local Football, Sugathadasa Stadium, an alien arena for Rugby until then.

Well known Rugby stalwart Y.C. Chang was the Chairman of the Organising Committee, with Jeff Matheson as its Technical Director.

Teams from Australia, Bulgaria, USA, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Wales, Arabian Gulf, New Zealand, Netherlands and Fiji, along with the host nation, scrummed down in this 2-day competition which comprised foreign club teams as well as respective Rugby unions' representative squads.

The team tagged "The Islanders- Fiji 2" made up of the best Fijian Rugby talent available in Sri Lanka at the time, and our own Chandrishan Perera, thrilled and stunned the packed Stadium with their delectable display of open Rugby, making good use of their speed, power and pace to lay hands on the championship trophy.


That 'All Black' team in the article was actually the first NZ Rugby League team.
Known then as the "Professional All Blacks", later nicknamed the perjorative All Golds.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1907%E2%8 ... at_Britain

But at that stage the rules of the two sports hadn't diverged.

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Re: Sri Lankan Rugby

Postby kush123 » Sat, 21 Oct 2017, 01:41

Immenso wrote:
That 'All Black' team in the article was actually the first NZ Rugby League team.
Known then as the "Professional All Blacks", later nicknamed the perjorative All Golds.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1907%E2%8 ... at_Britain

But at that stage the rules of the two sports hadn't diverged.


Thanks for that info, ex-royal NZ coach also said the same in fb :)

https://www.facebook.com/groups/SriLankaRugbyforum/permalink/947441425430941/

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