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First round table leaders CR & FC were stretched to the hilt by Old Trinitians S.C. in their Carlsburg Tropy ' A' Division final found match played at Bogambara yesterday.
The final scores read Cr & FC 24 (a goal, a try and 4 penalties) to OTSC's 10 (a goal and a penalty). C.R. led 16 to 7 at the half. The architect of the Red Shirt's victory was full-back Nalaka Weerakkody who put over 4 penalties and also goaled a try, which gave a tally of 14 points.
In contrast, OTSC's Orisi Kunalaeca fluffed 4 penalties and also missed a well attempted drop kick at goal. It was the OTSC that scored first. Then in the fifth minute, Full-back Weerakkody misfielded and Centre Manjula Pathirana was at hand to press the ball. Orisi added the extra points.
'Shanitha Fernando and Lasitha Gunaratne scored the tries for CR. Weerakkody goaled one try and also put over 4 penalties. Orisi in addition to goaling the try also put over a penalty.
CR were unfortunate that their professional Papua New Guinea Junior Nixon hurt his ankle midway through the initial half and had to leave the field. Up to that point, Nixon made some scintilating runs piercing the OTSC's defence.
Anil Jayasinghe refereed.
Kurunegala beat Petersons.
Kurunegala beat Petersons by 27 points ( 3goals, 2 penalties ) to 19 ( 2 goals, 1 try ) in the Plate champhionships played for the Carlsberg Trophy at Longden Place last evening.
The winners led 3 nil at the half.
CH & FC beat Police 15/3
CH & FC beat Police by 15 points (3tries) to 3 (1 penalty) at Maitland Crescent on Friday.
Excellent team effort by Hatton National Bank helped them to beat Union Assurance by 82 runs and win the Mercantile A Division final yesterday at the Sinhalese Sports Club grounds.
Skipper Varuna Waragoda led with a whirlwind half century and then used his bowlers intelligently to restrict the strong Union Assurance batting line up. HNB who had beaten Union Assurnace in the league stage proved that this win was no flash in the pan.
Invited to take first lease at the wicket HNB got off to a steady start, but lost their way early in the innings to be 78 for 4. At this stage skipper Varuna Waragoda was joined by Sanjeewa Silva. The pair routed the UAL bowling attack with a 96 run stand in 18 overs.
The partnership helped HNB to an imposing first innings total and also took away the initiative from UAL. Waragoda completed a stylish 65 from 67 balls which included 7 boundaries, while Silva played a resolute innings to score 50. All-rounder Kumara Dharmasena joined in the run feast as he remained unbeaten on 32 and HNB reached an imposing 240/6 in 50 overs.
Chasing an asking rate of 4.8 runs an over UAL received an early setback losing Dulip Samaraweera for 01 in Pramodya Wickremasinghe's first over. However Romesh Kaluwitharana stepped up the tempo with a blazing array of strokes to thrill the large crowd and help UAL to a flying start. They reached 50 in 6.2 overs. But soon after Kaluwitharana was out for 29 (in 23 balls) caught by Arnold at mid-wicket off Wendell Labrooy.
With the departure of 'Kalu' the UAL batsmen went into a shell and found runs hard to come. They lost wickets at regular intervals to be 88 for 4 at one stage.
Sri Lanka captain Arjuna Ranatunge who was playing his last game for UAL, made a brave attempt to revive the innings but failed. The left-hander was shaping well before he lost his cool and pulled a short ball from Arnold, straight to Dharmasena at the square-leg fence.
With the dismissal of Arjuna, Union Assurance were bowled out for 158 runs with 13 overs remaining.
HNB spinners Russell Arnold (3/17) Manoj Perera (3/24) and Kumara Dharmasena (2/24) were instrumental in their side's victory as they bowled a tidy line and length throughout the innings.
Hatton National Bank - 240/6 in 50 overs (Russell Arnold 22, Chaminda Handunhettige 23, Varuna Waragoda 65, Sanjeewa Silva 50, Kumara Dharmasena 32 n.o., Majula Munasinghe 2/27, Arjuna Ranatunge 2/51).
Union Assurance - 158 all out in 36.4 overs
(Romesh Kaluwitharana 29, Sanjeewa Ranatunge 28, Arjuna Ranatunge 22, Kumara Dharmasena 2/24, Manoj Perera 3/24, Russell Arnold 3/17).
Sri Lanka's cricketers facing the challenging task of maintaining their status as World Cup champions, are being put through ardous training sessions to take them to new dimensions in physical fitness and professional standards.
"Today we are the best. Tomorrow we must strive to be better," says star coach Dave Whatmore who is giving the Lankan cricketers a solid training in all dimensions - including physiotherapy, physiology, nutrition and psychology to make them solid in body and solid in mind.
After conquering cricket's greatest Prize, the World Cup Coach Whatmore is putting the cricketers through a meticulously planned Physical Training Schedule like never before. The idea behind the schedule is to minimise the occurrence of injuries and bring out the best in each individual.
In an interview with 'The Sunday Times' the Lankan born Australian Coach said, "Each and every player has been examined in-depth, and personal standards for weight and fat levels have been set with a time frame. Swimming, strength training, weight training, cardio-vascular exercises have all been assigned according to each player's requirement. Dietary recommendations have also been made depending on the need for players to lose or gain weight."
Training of this nature may have been done in the past, but this is the first time it is carried out in a scientific and systemic manner where all aspects are measured constantly, and closely monitored. This approach helps players to prevent the occurrence of an injury, and also brings out the best in them.
Assisting Whatmore and taking the Lankan cricketers to a new dimension in physical fitness is qualified Physiologist Richard Walsh. Richard's eight week stint with the Sri Lankan cricket team is funded by the Sri Lankan Cricket Foundation in New South Wales.
According to Whatmore, the present team of Sri Lanka cricketers is extremely talented, which was proved at the Wills World Cup. What remains to be worked out is to get the best of the players for the maximum period. It is with this in mind that Whatmore has carefully planned his schedules and sessions for the World Cup winners.
Whatmore is of the view that most Sri Lankan cricketers need to build themselves up physically to maximise their performance. However this has to be done with strict control on fat levels. For this purpose dietary recommendations have been given and players are adhering to it. On the other side of the coin certain players have been asked to shed a couple of kilos and all exercises and diets have been centred on the reduction in weight.
The interest and response from the poolists has been good and the coach is confident that with the guidance of Richard, each player will be able to achieve his individual goal.
The poolists are already exposed to experts on Physiotherapy (Alec Kontouri) and Physiology (Richard Walsh). Whatmore hopes to take a step further and expose the cricketers to experts on nutrition and psychology. This will help the cricketers to increase their mental toughness and also build their physiques according to their requirements.
The coach is optimistic that Sri Lankan cricketers should be able to play until they are in their mid-thirties or even further. However, to achieve this, cricketers will have to look after themselves well, with special emphasis on their fitness. Not only will it help the cricketers to play an extra year or two but also it will help to bring about the best in them.
Some say they has been in the correct place at the correct time, while others think they have brought about a new revolution in one-day cricket for Sri Lanka. However the fact remains that with his new and professional approach to the game Dare Whatmore has taken Sri Lanka to a new horizon in cricket, which augurs well for a country striving to be the best test playing nation by the year 2000!
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