Scrappy Police edge past Air Force

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Two tries in the last quarter of the game saw Police SC past hearted Air Force SC. Air Force SC’s misery continues as this is their 7th loss in a row in the Dialog Rugby League 2014/2015 on a gloomy evening in Colombo (Police Park) Police SC played host to Air Force SC. 

Police SC kicked off the game from right to left off the boot of Samantha Lakshan. Air Force SC made a hash of the kick off as they knocked on first up. Police SC made the men from Rathmalana pay for the early error, as a well worked move was rounded off by Winger Banuka Peiris to score in the left corner and open the scoring in the game. Samantha Lakshan failed to add the extras as the score remained 5-nil in favour of Police SC. (Police 5-0 Air Force)

Police SC made a horrible clearance of the resulting kick off and that proved vital as Air Force SC levelled the game minutes after falling behind on the score board. An over thrown line out by Air Force SC did not go a waste as Lock Forward Pradeep Kurukulasooriya snatched the ball and crashed over to level the game. Asanka Perera had the chance to put Air Force ahead but failed with the conversion. (Police 5-5 Air Force)

Air Force piled pressure on the Police defence and had a golden opportunity to go ahead in the game as Police SC was penalized for illegal scrumaging. Air force Centre Charith Senevirathna failed with the resulting kick as the score remained tied at 5 all. (Police 5-5 Air Force)

Police SC soon adapted to the pace of the game and struck back through a try of their own. Winger Heshan Gunaratne scored as Police SC worked the ball from one end to the other and found the winger at the end of it to round off a move of their own. Samantha Lakshan successfully converted the try. (Police 12-5 Air Force)

Air Force SC applied phase after phase of pressure but did not manage to crack the Police SC defence. Minutes before half time though, the Police defence cracked as Air Force SC’s Eduardo Felip crashed over after picking the ball from the ruck. Fullback Asanka Perera successfully converted this time to go level in to half time. (Police 12-12 Air Force)

Half Time: Police 12 (2T, 1C) – Air Force 12 (2T, 1C)

Air Force SC began the second half from where they left as they managed to score a runaway try. The ball squirted out from the ruck and Air Force flanker Rumesh Wasantha was first to react as he picked the ball, ran and threw a pass to Nalin Sirisena who went under the post.  Fullback Asanka Perera successfully converted the try. (Police 12-19 Air Force)

From then on it was all about Police FC as they turned the tables on Air Force SC. Foreign sensation Apisai Naqaliva lit up the game with his skills as stepped his way through the Air Force defence like a hot knife through butter as crashed beside the post to level the game yet again. Apisai Naqaliva converted his own try. (Police 19-19 Air Force)

Police SC sealed the game in the final quarter of the game as scrum-half Sudam Suriarachchi sold a dummy and crashed over from the ruck as he ended any hopes of an Air Force comeback. Apisai Naqaliva missed the conversion. (Police 24-19 Air Force)

Full Time: Police 24 (4T, 2C) beat Air Force 19 (3T, 2C)

ThePapare.com Player of the Match: Filimoni Seru

Referee: Paul Mackey

Police Coach Douglas Bursill expressed his view on the game:

“It was a little bit scrappy from the police side. We haven’t really improved since the CR match where we played probably our best game, but we have to go back to basics and get more fitness, get our clean outs better at the break down and simple things like good hands and make sure our defensive lines are a bit stronger. We have Army next week so it’s gonna be tough for us but if the boys play, when they play well in patches we score. And we play our patterns we do well, but I’m not really happy to be honest today.”

Teams: 

Police SC : Hashan Gomes (C), Banuka Piris, Horace Otieno, Samantha Lakshan, Heshan Gunaratne, Prasad Devinda, Sudam Suriarachchi, Paul Tuimalo, Farshad Mohomed, Gamunu Indrachapa, Pasidu Wathudura, Pawith Yasantha, Randira Silva, Rasith Silva, Prasath Madusanka. Replacements: Udara Gayan, Chanaka Suriyapperuma, Filimoni Seru, Thanujaya Senaviratne ,Apisai Naqaliva, Sithum Chathusanka, Ashan Bandara, Randitha Warnapura.

Air Force SC: Asanka Perera, Lahiru Weerasinghe, Vilikesa Koilage, Charith Senevirathna, Jero Dananjaya, Gayantha Iddamalgoda (C), Prasad Silva, Eduardo Filip, Sanjeewa Patabadige, Rumesh Wasantha, Pradeep Kurukulasooriya, Ranil Madagedara, Pushpa kumara Samarahewa, Lahiru Udayanga, Ranuka Madagedara. Replacements: Saumya Silva, Sampath Wickramasinghe, Pandula Bandara, Opeti Delena, Randika Rajakaruna, Soorya Krishan, Nalin Sirisena, Suranga Arunashantha.

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