Trinity humble Royal 34-11
68th Bradby Shield first leg :
Royal had to pay dearly for fielding their half fit skipper and fly
half Arshad Jamaldeen as Trinity swept to a 34 points (4 goals, 1
penalty and a drop goal) to 11 (1 try 2 penalties) win to dent Royal's
unbeaten record and also take the 'first leg' of the 68th Bradby Shield
rugger match at the Royal College Sports Complex grounds yesterday.
Trinity center Thisila Karunathileka cottects the ball from
Halique Wadood after evading a tackle from Royal number 8
Madusha Kularathne in the first leg of the Bradby Shield
played at the Royal College sports complex grounds yesterday
which Trinity won 34-11 Pic: Kavindra Perera
Jamaldeen usually a fine utility player who has been the key for his
school success this season was completely out of colour and looked only
a shadow of himself after sustaining an injury while playing against
Trinity looked a better organised outfit as they struck vital blows
time and again to rattle the Reid Avenue school. Trinity are the title
holders and Royal will have a gigantic task to win back the coveted
Bradby Shield in their second 'leg' played in the hill capital two weeks
time in Pallekelle.
Nothing sensational happened in the first half but Trinity looked
extremely dangerous while in possession as their three quarter line ran
the ball at every given opportunity in contrast to the Royalist with a
half fit Arshad Jamaldeen struggling to find his fluency. The Royalsits
won a good number of line outs with Wasim Bawa and Yasun Weerasuriya
But they could not convert the moves into points with Trinity forming
a strong defence. On the other hand Trinity made use of every move that
came their way running the ball with the three quarters.
Trinity opened scoring in the 5th minute via a drop goal through the
boot of Tharinda Ratwatte off a second phase move which Trinity won and
Ratwatte made no mistake with the twenty meter kick.
They immediately followed to increase their scoreline when winger
Dharshana Udalagama touched down after scrum half Somasiri kicked the
ball which was followed by Udalagama who covered good ground and dashed
to score under the post for Thisila Karunathileka to give them the extra
Fifteen minutes later Royal was awarded a penalty as the Trinity line
was found off side and Rimzi Jamaldeen (No relative of Arshad the
captain) obliged with the kick. Thisila Karunathileka made no mistake
with an easy penalty and the Kandy school increased their lead 13-3.
Royal scored their first try during the half way mark of the match when
Eroshan de Alwis powered his way off a short tap for an unconverted try.
The winners led 13-8 at lemons. After 38 minutes of play unruly
spectator threw a bottle on the playing field and referee Irshad Cader
brought the game to an abrupt half for about six minutes. Trinity was
leading 13-8 at this juncture. Soon after resumption a short tap was
knocked on by a Royal player and they missed a probable scoring
opportunity to reduce the gap.
In the 18th minute Trinity's Karunathileka produced a fine run after
collecting the ball in the Royal line and covered good ground . When
challenged he punted ahead picked up the ball but unfortunately could
not give the finishing touches for what would have been a spectacular
try if not for knocking on near the Royal goal line. However, on
resumption Royal dominated the second half through their hard working
forwards ,but the Trinity backs defended exceptionally well.
But Royal's lack of fitness was exposed in the last 15 minutes as
Trinity off a ten meter scrum when fly half Tharinda Ratwatte sliced
through the Royal defence to score near the post to give Thisila
Karunathileka an easy kick at goal. (Trinity 20-8).
Royal virtually gifted a try off a penalty attempted by Thisila
Karunathileka struck the cross bar and rebounded and as Royal fialed to
touch down in defence winger Dharshana Udalagama was there in a flash to
get his hand to the ball in the in-goal area. Karunathileka made a fine
Trinity 27-8) Five minutes before the final whistle substitute winger
Shanthana Sheik put the finishing touches to a fine three quarter move
by scoring by the corner flag, Karunathileka added the extra points
withm a fine kick.
In the dying stages of the game the Royalists reduced the deficit
when Rimzi Jamaldeen fired across a 25 meter penalty.
Referee: Irshad Cader.