The Singer Under-20 Division 1A rugby league tournament got off again after a lapse over ten days due to the Vesak holidays and is gathering momentum.
The completion of the third round matches last week saw table leaders St Peter’s along with defending champions Royal and Isipathana keeping their unbeaten records intact.
|Despite a draw against Vidyartha, Isipathana too are unbeaten in the Schools League. They beat Kingswood last week at Longdon Place. (Pic by Mangala Weerasekara)
The week also saw Trinity having their unbeaten record tarnished which has put them in a tricky position in quest for the league title. They are now left with the task of having to win the rest of their matches if they are to be in contention for league title.
But even then that could be achieved if only the other three unbeaten teams St. Peter’s, Royal and Isipathana lose any of their matches. But the way the Peterites and the Royalists are going it’s going to be tough and the matches between the three teams is no doubt going to be crucial.
The best result that was recorded in the five matches that was played over the weekend was between Trinity and St. Peter’s which was played at Pallekele that ended with Trinity undergoing a close 29-34 defeat in their own den.
But what matters at last is the win which the Peterites achieved in style and that too going into the match without their skipper and play maker Dhanushka Ranjan who underwent an injury in the match against St. Joseph’s.
In absence of the skipper their other play maker fly half Dulaj Perera took over to guide the Bambalapitiya boys.
Royal in their 32-17 win over Science College Mt. Lavinia underwent some anxious moments as they were made to fight hard for their win after holding on to a slender two points lead (12-10).
The two teams shared the honours in the first half with the lead changing hands during this session. But even then the Science side playing in front of their home crowd faltered at the latter stages which gave the Royalists the advantage.
Royal though holding to a slender two point lead opened up in the halfway stage of the second half by planting three tries to put the issue beyond doubt for their third successive win.
In contrast Isipathana came up with a top performance when they humbled one time champions Kingswood 35-5 after having a three point (8-5) lead at the breather.
Isipathana having being able to score a try and a penalty in the first half opened up the floodgates in the second half and added a further 27 points which came through two goals, tries and a penalty to secure their second win.
The most surprising win of the week was achieved by newcomers Vidyartha who got the better of St. Joseph’s by 41 points to 31. Vidyartha in fact turned the game in their favour after being 12-19 down at half time.
In the second half Vidyartha went on the rampage to add 29 points while restricting their opponents to 12 points which in fact was their first win after being elevated to the top group.
D.S. Senanayake College the other team to be elevated to the group and St. Anthony’s who were the only two teams to yet record a win figured in a ten all draw and will have to wait for another day to see the winning post.
Meanwhile there is a three cornered battle for the title in Singer Division 1B category which is between Dharmaraja, Wesley and S. Thomas’ who are the three unbeaten teams.
In the matches completed in this division over the weekend Dharmaraja recorded the best win when they crushed the hapless Lumbini MV 104-0 at Bogambara.
So it seems that they are in line of taking the top slot in this division. But Wesley and S. Thomas’ are close in their heels as they too have recorded three wins from as many matches.
Wesley recorded a comfortable 45-7 win over Mahanama while S. Thomas’ accounted for a 45-10 win against Thurstan. In fact the three teams were demoted from the top division along with Thurstan.
The other teams in this division are way behind and will be unable to make any impression even if they record any wins in the latter stages of the tournament.