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Sri Lanka fly high at Under 20 Asian Rugby 7s

Sri Lanka fly high at Under 20 Asian Rugby 7s

By Shamzeer Jaleel

Sri Lanka ended day one of the Under 20 Asian Sevens 2017 on a high note, winning all their three group matches at the Kings Park Rugby grounds at Kowloon in Hong Kong yesterday, with hopes of retaining their title.

The Sri Lankan outfit was outstanding in their skills and speed, with skipper Naveen Heenakankanmge being almost omnipresent. He split the opposition defense into pieces several times in the three encounters, going on to score a hat-trick against China, ending the day with 5 tries under his belt. Heenakankanmge was ably supported by Supun Dilshan and Avishka Lee, Sandesh Jayawickrema and Wajeed Fawmy.

Sri Lanka handed off Philippines in the opener 24 to nothing, before demolishing any Chinese hope with a run-away 43/7 win with Skipper Heenakanakanmge’s three tries coming in handy for the defending champions. In the last outing, though worn out, Sri Lanka played well against a well-drilled Malaysian outfit 26/5.    

Avishka Lee, Lahiru Herath (2) and Dinuka Amarasinghe scored tries in the first game against Philippines, while Heenakankanmge, Avishka Lee and Theekshana Dassanayake scored tries against Malaysia in the last outing. In the China game, other than three tries from Heenakankanmge, tries were scored by Lahiru Herath, Chamod Fernando, Sandesh Jayawickrema and Ranindu Padmashanka.  

Hosts Hong Kong too won all their three matches and handed off their closest rivals South Korea 38 to nothing. Both Sri Lanka and Taipei ended on 9 points apiece, while Hong Kong obtained 9 points and South Korea came in second with 7 points under their belt. Sri Lanka is very likely to meet either Thailand or South Korea in the semi-final encounter, provided they beat Taipei in their last group game today.  

Day 1 Men

Taipei beat China 17/5, Malaysia beat Philippines 26/0, Thailand drew with Singapore 12/12, Hong Kong beat Uzbekistan 52/0, Sri Lanka beat Philippines 24/0, Taipei beat Malaysia 40/12, South Korea beat Uzbekistan 45/0, Hong Kong beat Thailand 31/0, Taipei beat Philippines 36/7, Sri Lanka beat China 43/7, Thailand beat Uzbekistan 59/0, Sri Lanka beat Malaysia 26/5, Hong Kong beat South Korea 38/0, Singapore beat Uzbekistan 57/0

Posted on 2017-08-06 16:03:32
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QUESTION?

Should Dilshan have continued until Cricket World Cup 2019?

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THE DAY'S QUOTE

“That was pathetic. No excuse at all. The whole team is responsible. Whoever the captain is, we have to back him and try and support him. The captain has to do so many other stuff. All the 11 guys must back him and support him.” “We have addressed the issue of finishing off the overs on time in the past as well, but it cropped up again. It’s so unfortunate to see Upul going out as he is a crucial player in our set up. He batted well against South Africa and it’s so unfortunate. This can’t happen again,” - Angelo Mathews

FEEDBACK/COMMENTS

Cricket is a game of fine margins and Mathews is set to be a modern great. Hang in their Angie, this team can achieve something on this tour. Thirimane and the youngsters form was a real positive. Prasad was missed. Chameera should be persisted with. If Bairstow was our early outcome could have been very different.

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