Navy SC came into this game minus some of their key players who had been suspended for two games due to an internal disciplinary inquiry while Players like Sajith Saranga and Buddhima Piyarathne missed out due to injuries. Kandy SC too, who are still without their talisman Fazil Marija, made several changes in the starting lineup: Danush Dayan coming in at Full back and Srinath Sooriyabandara shifting into the wing. Shehan Lema and Gayan Weerarathne did not make the squad due to injuries.
Photo Album – Kandy SC Vs. Navy SC (Dialog Rugby League 2015/16)
With overcast conditions and an already slippery pitch due to overnight rain, Nigel Ratwatte, who played at no.10, kicked off proceedings in what was to be a rainy afternoon. Navy SC showed some early spark, with their forwards grinding their way forward and backs being equally good. Their first entry into the opposition half saw them winning a penalty right in front of the posts, 22 meters out. Fullback Thilina Weerasinghe made no mistake to draw first blood (3-0). The weather gods decided to make their presence felt with heavy rain coming down on the men on the field. The champions though came back strongly using the width of the field, despite the unfavourable conditions , to stretch the Navy defense through their speedy backs. The tactic worked as Nigel Ratwatte made a neat cross kick to Oshan Perera who in turn punted the ball ahead. Srinath Sooriyabandara showed his speed to outrun the desperate Navy defenders and score Kandy’s first points of the game. Nigel Ratwatte missed the difficult conversion. (3-5). Brimming with confidence, Kandy gradually started to take control of the game while their opponents wilted under pressure. 10 minutes later Nigel sneaked his way through the Navy defense and scored just beside the posts. Nigel converted his own try to put Kandy ahead 03-12. Oshan Perera was next to get into the act, dummying his way through, touching down mid right. Nigel converted and Kandy were ahead by 16 points. (03-19). The heavy downpour started to take its toll as both teams struggled to maintain continuity in their play. The remainder of the 1st half belonged to the hosts as they kept on piling the pressure. Despite the dominance in possession they were not successful in adding points as they kept fumbling the wet ball.
Half Time; Navy SC 03 – Kandy SC 19