18th March 2001
Front Page
Editorial/Opinion| Plus| Business
 Mirror Magazine
The Sunday Times on the Web

Rover Pinpoints....

Hoodwinking whom?

Rover learns that a leading sports body is deducting EPF and ETF dues from their employees according to their pay slips but not remitting them to the Labour Department or Bank. These monies deducted are refunded within a few days. How about an inquiry?
Laughing stock

A stand-in commentator of the SLBC had ‘stolen’ an over from the appointed commentator Suresh Chandra, which shamed the description of the second Test at Asgiriya. He did not know whether he was coming or going and kept on shouting that advertisements were interrupting his comments. Was the stand-in someone introduced by a VIP?
What a come down.

A big fuss was made that no paid coach - former or present - will be allowed to hold the post of President, according to a statement made by the Minister of Sports. First a Cabinet decision was taken to this effect, then on the instructions of the former Minister of Sports, he had questioned the validity of this decision. Thereafter a five member committee was appointed (all five Ministers) and a decision was to be given within five days. Now 25 days have passed with SB being the winner and LK the loser as predicted by Rover. At the BMICH LK said that the AAA president could continue to be in the same post as long as likes according to a certain newspaper report. Now everyone knows as to who is pulling the strings.
No where in the world.

Talking about the same subject, Rover wishes to remind LK, that a coach is not allowed as head of a sports body. Rover wishes to ask as to who is breaking the Sports Law now?
What a saviour

A family living inside the Galle Forte came to BBC team’s rescue, when the electricity connection was given to them to make broadcasts of the first Test to their listeners in UK after being refused entry to the Stadium on the second day.
Another first in Sri Lanka.

In Australia, England, South Africa, New Zealand, India, Pakistan and the West Indies cricket commentators are all from their own countries, but in Sri Lanka it’s the other way about . When inquiries were made, it was mentioned by the representatives, that the local Cricket Board had failed in their duty of recommending the local commentators.
Heard this?

The inter-house diving championships of a leading school in Colombo. saw the teachers have their final say. According to Rover, 18 participated in the first championships which saw two to three winners being the sons of teachers with only one qualified diving judge being present helped by a diver himself. The second saw 24 compete with three qualified judges officiating. Results were declared null and void as the teachers’ sons failed to win a place. The official prize-giving has been arranged with those who won in the first championships to be given the awards. Why this pressure, is it not bad for the sport?
Many objections

Several leading cricketers from a school in Matara are protesting on the behaviour of a high official of this school, that has the name of a saint. The crucifix installed here had been removed and the symbol of another religion has been installed. Another Taliban affair in the offing?
All goon

The Kandy District Cricket Association was deserted, with only the female voice there to answer to the needs of the locals who wanted to buy tickets. When she answered the phone, she said no one here, they are all goon.
Clean water

A senior official of the Kandy Municipality was pulled up by the head for supplying purified water for watering at the Asgiriya Stadium with many consumers being deprived of drinking water. The argument was why not non-purified water.
Politics in sport

A VIP from the Kandy District and Negombo had gone out of their way in requesting that the suspensions imposed on certain drivers for violating their declarations on their vehicles for participation should be removed completely by the Minister of Sports. Rover heard about this request about a month ago.
National Coach

Who is the National swimming coach? The question posed is whether the NAASU has approved the appointment of the National Coach.
Heavy canvassing

The election of office bearers of the NAASU is due to be held next week. Heavy canvassing is going on with the two B buddies phoning each Dick, Tom and Harry stating that it’s very difficult to work with so-and-so and not to vote for him, instead for vote to the one from the services.
Is it legal?

Is the NOC election held a few days ago legal? Questions are being posed how come this took place when the AGMs of the affiliated bodies are yet to be held. Rover learns that thuggery was used since all the officials who had power to vote were from the dead end of holding same. Why the hurry, when the NOC AGM was to be held in May or June.

Ananda and Nalanda craving for victory

By Leonard Ratnayake

The crave for a result and a good spectacle in the 72nd Battle of the Maroons between Ananda College to be played on 23 & 24 and Nalanda College has received a big blow with the absence of some of the best players in the side as the match is scheduled to get underway at the Sinhalese Sports Club during the weekend.

The last time the encounter has produced a result was in 1982, when an Anandians led by Deepal Dharmakeerthi emerged winners. Nalanda is yet to record a win since 1953.

The two teams have sacrificed the cream of their players for national duties as Muthumudalige Pushpakumara and Thilina Kandambi of Ananda College and Sukitha Peiris of Nalanda College went to represent the national under 19 team in a tour to Australia a week before.

Nalanda will be captained by a 4th year coloursman Dilhan Jayasundera in the absence of skipper Peiris.

The team will heavily depend on their most experienced batman and a former skipper Mevan Porage who had scored over 700 runs so far in the tournament. He will be supported by a fresher Gamini Chandrakumara, who had scored a century against S. Thomas’ College and is the only player to do so other thank Peiris who made four centuries for his over 1200 runs in the season. Mevan Dunusinghe and Amila Kiriella is expected to play the second fiddle in the batting.

Nalanda is equipped with opener right arm paceman Malinga Surappulige who had already taken 43 wickets so far and will be supported by another right armer who had claimed 23 wickets.

Their strengh in the spin department will lie on skipper Dilshan Jayasundera with 31 wickets already and Ishara Dilhan who captured 21 so far.

Despite the absence of their prolific scorer, Nalanda is hoping their strength would be the batting department and would expect the rest of them to rally around Mevan Porage.

In the absence of their best players Ananda will have to fight their way through as they hope to field a balanced side. However they were confident about their inform batsmen Lakshan Fernando, Yohan and Eshan Abeysinghe who had been the backbone of the batting so far in the season. The absence of the spinning duo has left the side to comprise with an averaga bowling attack and the coach forsees the youngsters would come up to the occasion.

“It is not going to be easy for us, since we are missing the services of our best players, but it is a golden opportunity for the youngsters and I am confident that they will come up to the occasion” coach said Anurudda Pollonowita.

Ananda college has been unbeaten so far in the school season and boasts of their solitary win against St. Annes XI, Kurunegala.

The team is led by four year coloursman and left handed opening batsman Lakshan Fernando in the absence of their normal captan Pushpakumara. Lakshan has so far scored heavily for his team including a century against St. Peter’s and four half centuries to accumulate over 750 runs.

Their depth of batting will lie on Eshan Abeyasinghe and Yohan Wickramage two left handed middle order batsmen who had scored over 500 runs so far this season.

Although their opening bowler right arm paceman Mihira Somaratne has taken only 25 wickets so far this season, many things are yet to come from him according to the team management. Their bowling will be strengthened by leg spinning skipper Fernando and right arm off spinner Wickramage who are the leading wicket takers of the side with 35 wickets apiece. A fresher and right arm opening bowler Isuru Dias, who has already claimed over 20 wickets will consist their average bowling attack.

The young team comprises two freshers Lahiru Senaratne and Bagya Thalagala who had come out with outstanding performances during the season to take over 20 wickets and score over 450 runs respectively.

The two teams

Nalanda College:

Dilhan Jayasundera (Captain), Mevan Porage, Amila Kiriella, Manjula Perera, Mevan Dunusinghe, Udara Dissanayake, Malinga Gamaarchchi, Ishara Dilshan, Malinga Surappulige, Sanjaya Gangodawila, Gamini Chandrakumara, Ranjeeva Gunawardena, Ajith Silva, Lasitha Amarasuriya and Charith Kumarasiri.

Ananda College:

Mohan Fonseka, Yohan Wickramage, Lakshan Fernando(captain), Nadeeshan Jayakody, Eshan Abeyasinghe, Sudam Nilaweera, Lahiru Senaratne, Bagya Thalagala, Mihira Somaratne, Tharindu Samaraweera, Miran Madapatha, Damidu Kularatne, Isuru Dias, Kalaruwan Jayaratne, Dinesh Danthanarayana.

the Battle of Maroons

Golden memories & silver sensations

By Varuna Ratnaweera

It had been 3 decades before I was born that the batting record for the highest individual score in the Maroons Battle had been set by P.M. Jayatillake who had notched up 111 runs.

In the last innings that Bandula Warnapura played in a Big Match against Ananda, he tore their bowling apart with superb strokes all round the wicket to erase this record which had stood the test of time for 44 long years, when in 1972 he bettered it with an 118 run unbeaten knock. Bandula later on went on to create history by being Sri Lanka’s first Test cricket captain.

Six years later Ananda’s Prasanna Amarasinghe established a new record in the 1978 Big Match with a workmanlike innings of 126 runs which we cheered with the same emthusiasm though it was from the opposite camp of Nalandians.

Prasanna’s effort remained the highest batting performance for the next six years, before another star emerged from the Nalanda camp - Roshan Mahanama displaying his batting prowess with a glorious unbeaten innings of 145 runs in 1984, which many thought would remain the highest record for years to come, the Maroons Battle being only a two-day affair. Two years later Roshan was picked to represent Sri Lanka in Tests against the Pakistanis and has been the longest serving Test cricketer from Nalanda todate.

In 1997 Nalanda skipper Shantha Kalawitigoda made the 68th match in the series, his very own game, with a superb unbeaten knock of 147 runs, thus becoming the highest individual batting record holder.

Bowling records on the other hand, have changed only twice during the last 32 years during which period we had the privilege of following this great encounter between the two leading Buddhist institutions.

First it was Anura Ranasinghe in 1975 who took 8 wickets for 39 runs with his tantalising left arm deliveries to break the record of 8 for 51 by Ananda’s P.W. Perera set up way back in 1940. Anura too like many others from Ananda and Nalanda went onto gain National Honours and become Sri Lanka’s 13th Test player.

Though Anura breathed his last in November 98, the pleasure he brought to numerous cricket fans in Sri Lanka will be remembered by them for many more years.

Incidentally Anura’s younger brother Aruna has the unique distinction of being the only bowler to have dismissed the batting record holder in the series - Prasanna Amarasinghe’s priced wicket, after he had amassed 126 runs against a hapless Nalanda bowling attack, was claimed by him.

The next Maroons encounter in 1976 saw Yohan Gunasekara (another player from Nalanda who represented Sri Lanka in Tests) improving on Anura’s performance with 8 scapls for 32 runs, which still remains the best individual bowling feat in the series.

While the memories of such batting and bowling performances remain etched in our minds, the high point in this Maroons Battle year after year has been the friendly atmosphere which has prevailed across the borders which have been laced with Silver and Gold innings.

English cricketers coach promising youngsters

By Ruth Sutton

Young cricket players from The Deaf School of Sri Lanka, Ratmalana and the SOS Orphan Village at Piliyandala took up the rare opportunity to be coached by international cricket players with enthusiasm and determination.

The Taj Samurda Hotel provides assistance and funding to the SOS children’s village, and this special event was hosted in their elegant grounds on Tuesday March 13, in co-operation with the British High Commission who support The Deaf School.

The British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Linda Duffield had lead this initiative by approaching the England Team, and asking if they would like to participate.

The England Cricketers were more than happy to take part in a project involved in giving something back to the community of the host country who has shown them such hospitality throughout their tour.

As president of the British Wives’ Welfare Group, (who support 14 projects for children, the disabled and the elderly across the country) Linda Duffield has been at the forefront of similar enterprises before. She is committed to encouraging visiting British sportsmen, shipping crews, army and navy personnel to take part in activities with disadvantaged children in the country during their stay.

The young cricketers from The Deaf School turned out in identical immaculate whites, and it was fascinating to watch a group of young people communicate so emphatically and with such excitement, but absolutely no sound!

Using a mixture of sign language, universal gestures and examples, the professionals were soon leading the youngsters in laughing their way through a series of warm up exercises.

The England team seemed to have a natural aptitude for working and playing with the pupils, and their hard work was matched by the sustained positive effort, and the level of skill of the children.

The training session provided both the children and the professionals with a unique and rewarding experience, but perhaps the English were warily sizing up potential players during their coaching?

It is quite clear from the quality of the young cricketers that the next generation of England’s finest are assured of some superb Sri Lankan opposition!

D.S.-Bens at the CCC grounds...

By Bernie Wijesekera

The 11th annual Big Match between D.S. Senanayake College and St. Benedict’s will be staged for the first time at the CCC grounds at Maitland Crescent on March 30 and 31.

The Principal of DSSMV., Asoka S. Hewage was interviewed by The Sunday Times for its re-development project to afford better facilities for the youngsters to further improve their skills.

The Cricket Development Foundation, brainchild of the OBA headed by its President, Anurudha Wi-jesekera has already got their act together. Firstly, the former Sri Lanka all-rounder Rumesh Ratnayake laid the foundation stone for the electronic scoreboard. It’s being funded by the OBA. Today, a former Sri Lanka ‘keeper Pubudu Dassa-nayake, an old boy. has been appointed as the permanent cricket coach.

Anything special about DSSMV promoting sports among the youngsters?

Via sports they could learn much besides the books. They will be more disciplined, be able to face setbacks in competitive sports, i.e., in team sports. Further, face defeat and victory in the same vein. As the head of the school, I have paid emphasis to maintain the spirit of the game at all times and not disgrace this great game of character- building. The recent happenings in the ongoing series between Sri Lanka and England, where the behaviour has degraded the game. Any comments? I agree. The umpiring at times may be found wanting, the player concerned may be at the receiving end. It’s not going to be changed, but the players must conduct themselves on and off the field.

The Big match between the two schools is to bring about understanding and togetherness not only among the participants but also among the parents and old boys of the respective institutions, Mr. Hewage added. Even a match between staff and old boys too will be played. Sports inculcates discipline to churn out them to be useful citizens and do proud to the school in latter life. I am grateful to the OBA for giving all assistance to the school. Its two wings, the Sports Council and the Cricket Dev. Foundation for their continuous support, with men and material. The old boys are giving something back to the school which has helped them to go places in their latter life, Hewage added.

The first big match was staged in 1991 at Khettharama. To date all the matches had ended in a stalemate. In the one-dayers both teams have won three matches each. The one-day match on April 1, too will be played at the CCC.

Index Page
Front Page
Mirrror Magazine

More Sports

Return to Sports Contents


Sports Archives

Front Page| News/Comment| Editorial/Opinion| Plus| Business| Sports| Mirror Magazine

Please send your comments and suggestions on this web site to 

The Sunday Times or to Information Laboratories (Pvt.) Ltd.

Presented on the World Wide Web by Infomation Laboratories (Pvt.) Ltd.
Hosted By LAcNet