Isipathana had an ordinary league campaign by their standards, which is why they would be desperate to secure the Milo President’s Trophy Knockout Tournament. The defending champions will start off their campaign Sunday evening when they face a very dangerous St. Anthony’s College side in the third quarter-final at Sugathadasa Stadium.
Sumudu Rankothge’s side was given a run for their money by the Antonians during the league encounter where Isipathana held on to score a narrow victory.
Despite taking a 43-13 half time lead, St. Anthony’s fought their way back into the game with a stunning second half display though they trailed by eight points when the final whistle was blown.
Captain Dinuk Amarasinghe was hugely instrumental for the Kandy side bagging a hat-trick although his team failed to gain any point off that fixture.
The former Sri Lanka Under-18 player is expected to cause a lot of problems for Isipathana backs, but if St. Anthony’s are to pull off an upset victory, they will have to put together a good collective effort against one of the tournament’s favourites.
Isipathana on the other hand would be under slight pressure to salvage something out of what turned out to be quite an ordinary season for the team from Havelock Town.
Scrum half Harith Bandara had an excellent game against St. Anthony’s in their previous meeting scoring a couple of tries. The 19-year-old was named player of the last tournament in this particular competition, so the nippy half back would look to carry on the good work.
Chamod Fernando has been crucial for them this season. Another former Under-18 player, Fernando has been a solid performer for Pathana over the last couple of years contributing with tries. This season however, he proved to be the solution for Isipathana’s kicking struggle. Head Coach Lasintha de Costa would be quite pleased with Fernando’s performance as the full back and the place-kicker of the side.
Isipathana will certainly start this game as favourites, but St. Anthony’s have the potential to be the surprise package of this tournament.
Isipathana squad: Sumudu Rankothge (Captain), Danushka Madusanka, Vimesh Warnapura, Ramash Sachintha, Vikash Vimadhawa, Pasindu Dissanayake, Duvindu Charith, V. Dilshan, Kushmal Rathnaweera, Nipun Nirmala, Chamod Sandaruwan, Sudeera Dissanayake, Vishwa Kalpana, Nisaka Perera, Ilusha Yasas, Ravindu Anjula, Nazran Nilamudeen, Manoj Gautham, Umesh Jayamanne, Hasindu Shanilka, Janith Serasinghe, Ahamed Azmie, Devin Gunarathna, Dulanjana Kavindu, Dinith Galhena, Harith Bandara, K Chamat, Dilshan Kumar, Upaka Hasantha, Randy Silva, Faaiq Jamaldeen, Ranuja Silva, Dileeka Hettiarachchi, Kelum Lakmal, Nadeesha Chaminda, Manilka Sulakshana, Chamod Fernando, Sandun Avishka, Vinoga Keshava, Binura Yasvin, Janith Shehan, Ramitha Himash,Anjana Thushan, Manula Ratnayake, Supun Tharusha.
St. Anthony’s squad: Dinuk Amarasinghe (Captain), Dinesh Rodrigo, Samuel Maduwantha, Theeksha Gunasinghe, Ramadesh Harshan, Janidu Himsara, Sasanka Millamadiththa, Kavindha Amarakoon, Nihan Perera, Lashan Mahindarathna, Mathisha Amerasinghe, Mohommed Makarim, Chamara Lakshan, Thirusha Ekanayake, Niranga Lakshan, Jithen Daulagala, Shane Weniton, Suhail Waseem, Shashika Wijewardana, Jehan Seelagama, Pramuditha Wickramaarachchi, Ruvan Amarasinghe, Savesh Weerakoon, Ashen Premarathne, Amitha Shanaka Samuel, Mohammed Shabeer, Sachintha Akalanka, Pulasthi Dassanayake, Kavindu Warnakulasuriya, Sachith Peiris, Pasindu Pavithra, Ishara Liyanage, Chamod Wanasinghe, Dulanjana Lakshan