Sport

Dialog-ST 2019: Lakshitha Rasanjana Manasinghe of Nalanda College is Top Gun

21 September 2019 - 48   - 0

September 16, 2019 is a day that will remain for months, or probably years, in the hearts of over 200 Schoolboy and Schoolgirl cricketers, their families and friends. 

t was the day when a multitude witnessed the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019 awards ceremony at the Nelum Pokuna Theatre in Colombo. 

Nalanda College skipper and former Sri Lanka Under-19 all-rounder, Lakshitha Rasanjana Manasinghe, definitely would have been over the moon, when he was named Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019, at the latter part of the show. 

This was a fitting finale to a glamorous awards ceremony. 

Lakshitha had to walk up to the stage thrice, to receive the Premier Schools Best Fielder and Best All-rounder awards, then with his team, Nalanda College, to receive the Runner-up award for the Best Team. 

Along with Trinity College spinner Kavishka Senadeera and St. Peter's College allrounder Santhush Gunathilake, Lakshitha was a nominee for the apex award of the day. 

Not in his wildest dreams would Lakshitha have thought that he would end up as the star of the day, with the prestigious Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019 award from his idol, Kumar Sangakkara, who graced the occasion as the chief guest. 

"It was a dream come true for me. I was keeping my fingers crossed until the final moments, wondering, if I would stand a chance to grab the main award. It's a known fact that, past winners of this award have gone to represent Sri Lanka at the highest level. With my performances and contributions to the Nalanda College team, as well as to the Sri Lanka Under-19s, I too had that dream at the back of my mind. I was surprised and overjoyed when I was called up backstage by the organisers, who told me I was the winner and there's a special arrangement for the revelation," an overjoyed Lakshitha stated, soon after he won the top award. 

While the other 4 winners -- Most Promising Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year, Runner-up and winner of the Emerging Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year and Runner-up of the Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year, walked up the stage to receive their awards from the presentation party, which included Kumar Sangakkara (Chief Guest), Rangana Herath (Guest of Honour), Supun Weerasinghe (Group Chief Executive, Dialog Axiata PLC), Lal Jayawardene (Director, Wijeya Newspapers), Thisara Kasthuriarachchi (Head of Prepaid Mobile Business, Dialog Axiata PLC), Sujith Pathirennehe (Assistant General Manager, Brands & Promotions, Wijeya Newspapers) and Champika Fernando (Sports Editor, the Sunday Times), something special was arranged for Lakshitha. 

While a video clip of Lakshitha was being shown, he was brought up to the stage from the bottom, by the rising orchestra pit, and revealed to the audience as the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019, and the entire crowd gave Lakshitha a fitting standing ovation.

The award was brought to the stage by the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2018, Kamindu Mendis, now a national player, who handed it over to Dialog Axiata's Group Chief Executive, Supun Weerasinghe, who, in turn, gave Kumar Sangakkara the honour of awarding it to Lakshitha. 

As the crowd joined the celebrations with Lakshitha, Master of Ceremonies, Faizal Bongso made a surprise announcement that had been kept a secret by the organisers Dialog Axiata PLC and Wijeya Newspapers Ltd, for some time. 

Lakshitha was thrilled when he came to know that he would undergo a special all-paid three-week training at the renowned Darren Lehman Cricket Academy in Australia. 

Prior to the fitting finale, 52 winners walked up to the stage to receive their awards from categories of Premier, Emerging, Up-and-Coming and Girls Schools, as individuals or teams. 

The ceremony was graced by one of Sri Lanka's most celebrated cricketers, Kumar Sangakkara as the chief guest while the world’s most successful left-arm bowler, Rangana Herath was the Guest of Honour. 

The show had a smooth flow as compeers Faizal Bongso and Thejani Wijesinghe ensured there was not a dull moment. Performances by Dumal Warnakulasuriya, Danith Sri, Dilmin Perera, Dulsara and Shehan Kaushalya, backed by the talented and versatile band 'Naada', kept the crowd entertained. 

Dance items by Mudrika's Dance Troup, added more thrills and spills. The event is annually organised jointly by Wijeya Newspapers Ltd and Dialog Axiata PLC, to recognise the talents of young school cricketers and encourage them to become future stars. 

Award winners 

Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019 
Lakshitha Rasanjana Manasinghe (Nalanda College, Colombo) 

Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019 Runner-up 
Kavishka Senadeera (Trinity College, Kandy) 

Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Emerging Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019 
Samith Isuru (Karandeniya Central College) 

Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Emerging Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019 Runner-up 
Chamod Sandaru (Piliyandala Central College) 

Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Most Promising Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year 2019 
Janadi Anali (Anula Vidyalaya, Nugegoda) 

Premier Schools 

Best Fielder 
Winner: Lakshitha Rasanjana Manasinghe (Nalanda College, Colombo) 
Runner-up: Amitha Dhananjaya Dabare (DS Senanayake College) 

Best Wicketkeeper 
Winner: Shannon Fernando (St. Peter’s College, Colombo) 
Runner-up: Dilhara Polgampola (Nalanda College, Colombo) 

Best Bowler 
Winner: Kavishka Senadeera (Trinity College, Kandy) 
Runner-up: Kalana Perera (S. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia) 

Best Batsman 
Winner: Santhush Gunathilake (St. Peter’s College, Colombo) 
Runner-up: Nishan Madushka (Moratu Maha Vidyalaya) 

Best Allrounder 
Winner: Lakshitha Rasanjana Manasinghe (Nalanda College, Colombo) 
Runner-up: Mohamed Imthiaz Slaza (Zahira College, Colombo) 

Premier Schools Best Team 
Winner: S. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia 
Runner-up: Nalanda College, Colombo 

Premier Schools Best Captain: Sithara Hapuhinna (S. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia) 

Emerging Schools 

Best Fielder 
Winner: Chamod Sandaru (Piliyandala Central College) 
Runner-up: Ishara Maduwantha (Karandeniya Central College) 

Best Wicketkeeper 
Winner: Janeth kaushal (Karandeniya Central College) 
Runner-up: Ravishan Perera (Holy Cross College, Kalutara) 

Best Bowler 
Winner: Nimnaka Jayathilake (St. Anthony’s College, Katugasthota) 
Runner-up: Ravindu Milan (Karandeniya Central College) 

Best Batsman 
Winner: Sohan de Livera (Sri Devananda College, Ambalangoda) 
Runner-up: Chamod Sandaru (Piliyandala Central College) 

Best Allrounder 
Winner: Samith Isuru (Karandeniya Central College) 
Runner-up: Heshan Madushanka (Piliyandala Central College) 

Best Emerging Team 
Winner: St. Anthony’s College, Katugastota 
Runner-up: Piliyandala Central College 

Up-and-Coming Schools 

Best Bowler 
Winner: Nadeera Ishan (Vidyaloka College, Galle) 
Runner-up: Kavindu Maduranga (Nalanda Boys' School, Minuwangoda) 

Best Batsman 
Winner: Kalana Madushanka (Seethawaka Central College, Avissawella) 
Runner-up: Viraj Hemantha (Nugawela Central College) 

Best Allrounder 
Winner: Sandaruwan Chinthaka (Galahitiyawa Central College) 
Runner-up: Nisal Malinga (Christ King College, Ja-Ela) 

Up-and-Coming Best Team awards 

Western Province: Christ King College, Ja Ela 

Southern Province: Vidyaloka College, Galle 

Central Province: Sri Rahula College, Katugastota 

North Western Province: Maliyadeva Model School, Kurunegala 

Girls’ Schools 

Best Girls Team 
Winner: Devapathiraja College, Ratgama 
Runner-up: Rathnavali Girls School, Gampaha 

Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Most Popular Schoolboy/Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year 

Premier Schools 
Winner: Navod Paranavithana (Mahinda College, Galle) 
1st runner-up: Pasindu Ushetti (Maris Stella College, Negombo) 
2nd runner-up: Muizz Rafeel (St. Anne’s College, Kurunegala) 

Emerging Schools 
Winner: Lithija Kalhara (Ananda Maithree College, Balangoda) 
1st runner-up: Vishal Rukshan (St. Peter’s College, Udugampola) 
2nd runner-up: Thanusha Sandaruwan Costa (St. John's College, Nugegoda) 

Girls Schools 
Winner: Sathya Sandeepani (Devapathiraja College, Rathgama) 
Runner-up: Kaveesha Dilhari (Devapathiraja College, Rathgama) 

Dialog 4G Special awards 
Dialog 4G Fastest to 1000 Runs: Santhush Gunathilake (St. Peter’s College, Colombo) 
Dialog 4G Fastest to 100 Wickets: Kavishka Senadeera (Trinity College, Kandy) 
Dialog 4G Bowler: Nadeera Ishan (Vidyaloka College, Galle)

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