An interesting match, moreover one that will certainly evoke plenty of nostalgic memories, is on the cards today when the old boys of Kingswood and Dharmaraja play their annual limited over match at Lake View. The significant point about the match is that it will be played, for the first time, for the Arthur Alwis-Clifford Ratnavibushana Memorial trophy.
Arthur Alwis, one of those legendary Rajan personalities, captained the cricket team in 1944 and became the first big match centurion (121), even though the series was then in its 44th year. He also had a match bag of 9 for 39 in that match. Arthur was also an athletic, football and hockey coloursman. He was responsible for forming the Central Province Cricket Umpires’ Association in 1967. Clifford Ratnavibushana who captained the Kingswood side in 1960-61, was also a big match centurion.
The 167 runs he made in 1959 stood as the highest score in the series until Rajan Senaka Dissanayake bettered that by scoring 200 in the 1983 match. Incidentally, that was the first score of 200 or more on the reconstructed Asgiriya ground.Talking of Kingswood-Dharmaraja Big Matches, the 1966 one was sensational from one point of view.
At the end of the match, the scores, according to the scorers were tied. Amidst the din and the excitement, the principal of Kingswood, the late, much lamented, Kenneth de Lanerolle perused the scorebooks, found that his team was short by a run and duly awarded the match to Dharmaraja. That was another time and another place.
The old boys’ teams for today’s match are as follows.
Kingswood (from): Upul Senerath, Ananda Kasthuriarachchi, Krishantha Gnanaratne, Sujeeva Fernando, Prasanna Ediriweera, Upul Sumanasekara, Naushad Samath, Gayan Fernando, Hilmi Ghaffoor, Vijitha Dissanaike, Nalin Cooray, Tirana Gamage, K.U. Nishantha, Dhanushka Weerakkodi, Asanga Ranasinghe.
Dharmaraja (from): Ajith Naranpanawe, Senaka Dissanayake, Prasanna Walalawela, Wasantha Gunaratne, Udaya Yatawara, Chapa Weeraratne, Harold Ranasinghe, Senaka Pieris, Thilak Wijeratne, Dhananjaya Navaratne, Lalith Weragala, Prasanna Dahanayake, Pradeep Heenkende, Sarath Munaweera, Ajith Palihakkara.