The Navy sports club missing a whole host of big names made easy work of the Sri Lanka Air Force as they scored 6 tries on a soggy out field at Welisara.
Air Force kicked off the game on a rather gloomy and soggy day at Welisara.
Navy SC captained by flanker Dhanushka ‘Gertha’ Perera received the kick off as Air Force started the game from right to left. Navy made their intentions clear on a wet out field as they cleverly made a good exit out of their own half. Air Force on the other hand deprived of the resource of a good kicker had to run the ball in their red zone and it cost them duly as they conceded an unnecessary penalty. Navy Fullback Thilina Weerasinghe slotted home 40 meters from right in front to register the first points of the Dialog Rugby League 2015/2016. (Navy 03 – Air Force 00)
Navy SC were rewarded for their good work at the break-down as they were awarded a penalty for holding at the ruck. Three phases later Navy SC’s giant Lock forward Sathya Ranathunga found his himself at the end of a pass as he barged his way to the try to finish a well drilled training ground move. Full back Thilina Weerasinghe made no mistake as he added the extras to pull Navy ahead by 10 points to nil. (Navy 10 – Air Force 00)
Air Force finally managed to get into the game as they found themselves in a good attacking position in Navy’s half. Air Force made full use of the opportunity as center Charith Senavirathna made a dazzling break through the heart of the Navy defense. He worked his way and threw a long pass to winger Ishara Madhushan as the winger showed good finish and dotted down in the far corner to register first points for Air Force. Nuwan Perera made a hash of the touch line conversion as the score remained 10 -05 in favor of Navy SC. (Navy 10 – Air Force 05)
Navy SC did not let the game slip away as they turned the pressure back on Air Force. Sailors’ Winger Heshan Maduranga made a clean break down the far touch line only to be belatedly high tacked in the far corner. From the resulting penalty, Navy SC took a quick tap and gave the ball to Lock Sathya Ranathunga as he hurled himself over for try number two. Navy Full back Thilina Weerasinghe added the extras. (Navy 17 – Air Force 05)
Air Force brought the game back to within touching distance as they managed a solitary penalty in the dying embers of the first half. Full back Nuwan Perera made no mistake with the kick as he drew the first half to a close. (Navy 17 – Air Force 08)
Half Time: Navy 17 (2T 2C 1P) – Air Force 08 (1T 1P)
Navy coach threw on fresher Stephan Gregory alongside experienced winger Dinusha Chathuranga who was unsurprisingly left out of the stating 15 as he is heavily linked with a move away from Navy Sc.
The second half of the game was solely dominated by Navy as the managed to score three unanswered tries.
The first of which came off a scrum where Air Force Number 08 made an unwanted off load. Lee Keegal was the first to pounce on the loose ball as he gathered and assisted fellow Center partner Kosala Thisera to send him untouched over the try line under the post. Thilina Weerasinghe bisected the uprights to extend their lead further. (Navy 24 – Air Force 08)
The home team sealed the game and with that a bonus point as they former skipper Yositha Rajapaksa scored off a well drilled maul. Dev Anandh failed to add the extras for Navy. (Navy 29 – Air Force 08)
Supun Peiris added the icing on the cake as he made the ill-disciplined Air Force team leave Welisara with nothing as they ended a 5-phase move with a try to give Navy a pleasing win. Dev Anandh made no mistake as he kicked the final conversion as Navy ended the first game of the Dialog Rugby League 2015/ 2016 in style. (Navy 36 – Air Force 08)
Full Time: Navy 36 (5T 4C 1 P) beat Air force 08 (1T 1P)
ThePapare man of the match: Sathya Ranathunga (Navy Lock Forward)