Unstoppable Kandy wins Clifford Cup for record 21st time

Unstoppable Kandy wins Clifford Cup for record 21st time

The victorious Kandy SC captain Rohan Weeraratne (left) along with his brother Gayan Weeraratne receive the Dialog Clifford Cup from Pradeep Keerthiratne,

vice president, National Sales, Dialog Axiata PLC. Former Sri Lanka players Priyantha Ekananayake an
Unstoppable Kandy Sports Club proved why they are the top Sri Lankan rugby club when they overwhelmed Havelock Sports Club by 32 points (3 goals, 1 try, 1 drop goal, 1 penalty) to 20 (1 goal. 2 tries. 1 penalty) in the final to retain the Clifford Cup and win it for a record 21st time at the Nittawela yesterday. At half time Kandy led 24-3.

This win follows their victory in the Dialog league championship which gives them the double for the season.

The final was played under wet conditions as suddenly at 3 pm the rain came down heavily and the ground was made soggy. However with the kick-off the rain ceased.

The final was all about attitude and Kandy knew how to work through it. The team was in superb physical condition and they were a level above the opponents. Kandy showed better teamwork than the losers and their defence was really difficult for the Park Club to make any progress.

Kandy was brilliant yesterday. Be it a forward loose maul or three-quarter move, they were there on the ball like a cat pouncing on a mouse. Whenever or wherever the ball was they were swiftly onto it. They stuck to their guns and certainly stamped their class.

The Park club players not to be outdone played the game of their lives. They played like a pack of tigers. Their forwards deserve a big bouquet but their threes had little chance against the fleet-footed Kandy backs.

The attitude of the Havelock's players was good and they fought it out for the entire game.

Havelock's were determined to stage a better performance and with the kick-off for the first 10 minutes or so they piled enormous pressure on Kandy SC. Sean Wijesinghe had told the players not to give away penalties and concentrate on the set scrums and line outs to give back a 90-95% performance. In the first half Kandy gave away far too many penalties but fortunately Havelock's couldn't capitalize on that.

For Kandy SC Gayan Weeraratne (2), Fazil Marija (1) and Richard Dharmapala (1) scored the tries.

Thilina Wijesinghe scored a brilliant drop goal and also made four conversions that included a penalty. For Havelock SC Nishon Perera (2) and skipper Dushmantha Priyadarshana (1) touched down. Hirantha Perera converted one of them and also put over a penalty. (Daily News)


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