Iqbal Hassen the rugby Chairman of the CH & FC rugby team can now breathe a huge sigh of relief as his request addressed to the Sri Lanka Rugby Football Union seeking reprieve to meet his team’s dire basic needs and costs has been met.
CH was on the verge of pulling out of the current Dialog sponsored ‘A’ Division tournament due to the lack of a home ground to practice and host home games and also due to huge financial setbacks they faced.
The Club in fact requested their last weekend’s game against Kandy be postponed as the team had not practiced for well over two weeks and also since they had to send their foreign players back home as they could not afford to keep them.
Hassen’s request was tabled at last Friday’s Council Meeting and all members extended their fullest support and corporation to do whatever it takes to keep this historic club in the fray.
Havelocks and CR have intimated that CH could share their grounds as and when needed and also the SLRFU had confirmed that they would chip in and bridge any other costs that the club may have to bare.
CH who started the season off with huge expectations had their hopes dashed, when firstly a sponsor who promised to come on board sold them a dummy.
They were further hampered when the club who also shares their home grounds with their club’s cricketers who make up the premier Colombo Cricket Club, were informed that the home ground at Maitland Crescent, which incidentally was also a test Cricket venue would be entrusted to the cricketers due to the premier rugby and cricket tournaments clashing.
The SLRFU however had informed all rugby playing clubs well in advance of this change that the rugby season would be now starting in October as opposed to the regular kick off of the tournament which usually fell in May.
CH ended the first round with a solitary win against Air Force which incidentally was their opening encounter.
Thereafter they hit rock bottom and it was a crying shame to see them withering to the point of almost being extinguished prematurely, even before the season could end.