CR huff and puff to blow down Army
By Rangi Akbar
CR who will face Kandy SC in a crunch Caltex league second round game at Nittawela next Sunday(August 21) were not all that impressive as they limped to a 17 points (1 goal, 2 tries) to 10 (1 goal, 1 penalty) at Longden Place yesterday. CR led 17-7 at lemons.

The ‘red shirts’ were not all at home and struggled to beat the disjointed Army. The soldiers were let down by a weak halves combination and a slow moving set of three-quarters. CR drew first blood when winger Wekadapola blazed through to an unconverted try far right in the 11th minute.

CR tried their best to score again but were thwarted by the Army defense despite the good work done by skipper Pavithra Fernando, towering second rower Karthelis, scrum half Zulki Hamid, Mushtaq and fullback Sheriff.

Army caught the CR flat footed in the 18th minute when left winger Parakum Fernando outpaced the CR defense to score under the posts. Kapila Knowlton was on target with the place kick to put Army ahead at 7-5.

CR anxious to keep their unbeaten tag intact came back with a vengeance. They pressed on the Army line and they were rewarded with a penalty try when the soldiers willfully collapsed a scrum. Sheriff made sure of the conversion to put CR ahead for the first time in the game at 12-7.

Mushtaq who played a fighting game for CR struck next. Sheriff was off target with his conversion kick. This took CR’s points tally to 17. That was as far as the CR scoring went. Half time was taken at this score.

In the first half CR’s skipper Pavithra Fernando had to leave the field with a head injury and was replaced by Shamly Nawaz. However the CR skipper returned to pass and tackle with a bandaged head.

CR failed to impress in the second session. The Army kept them at bay not allowing them to run the ball. Kapila Knowlton, who took the conversions in the absence of their ace place kicker Thushara Silva who is injured, failed with a penalty. In the dying stages Army were awarded another penalty. This time Duminda called the shots correctly by converting it. This took Army’s final tally to 10 and CR’s final score to 17.

CR’s back division left much to be desired with the absence of their star centre Rajith Jayasundare who has gone for studies abroad. Rajith is expected back on August 16 and should be available for their key game against Kandy SC.

Next Saturday (Aug. 20) CH take on Army at Galle Face.
Referee: Pradeep Fernando

Kandy outclass navy
The defending champions Kandy SC came back to their own again before their grand finale against CR & FC next Sunday when they sunk the Sailors by 55 points (4 goals, 1 penalty goal, 4 tries) to 15 points (1 goal, 1 try, 1 penalty) at Welisara yesterday. At “Lemon”the winners led 22-8.

Navy drew first blood in the 7th minute through a try by Ratnasuriya. But kandy hit back soon through a sweeping three quarter move through Pradeep Liyanage. From this stage onwards Kandy dominated the proceedings scoring tries through Pradeep Basnayake (comeback game after a lay off), Fazil Marija and skipper Sanjeewa Jayasinghe.

After the turn around Kandy scored tries through Pradeep Chathuranga, Pradeep Liyanage and Jeewa Galgamuwa. The conversions were taken by Fazil Marija and Amjad Buksh.


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