Sri Lanka pumped up for Asian Rugby Sevens

Ben Gollings (Coach), Vishwa Mithra Jayasighe, Mithun Hapugodage, Diushan Chathuranga,, Dilip Selvam, Soyoru Anthony, Saliya Hadapangoda and Sajith Saranga

By Easwaran Rutnam

Pic by Dennis Muthuthanthri
The Sri Lanka rugby sevens national team is pumped up for the Asian Rugby Sevens tournament in Singapore this week and are hopeful of pulling off a surprise to qualify for the 2013 Rugby World Cup in Moscow.
Sri Lanka coach Ben Gollins, speaking to The Sunday Leader on the sidelines of a training session with the Sri Lanka team, said that China will be the biggest obstacle his team faces on the road to win the tournament in Singapore.
The Asian Rugby Sevens will be worked off in Singapore on November 2 and 3 and Sri Lanka is in Pool ‘D’ together with Japan and Indonesia while China is in Pool ‘C’ together with Malaysia and Kazakhstan.
The Asian Rugby Sevens is also the Asian qualifier for the 2013 Rugby World Cup and Gollins, a British national, feels Sri Lanka, on current form, is good enough to qualify.
“We have undergone good team preparation. We trained with a wide squad and cut it down to 16 players. The boys are excited after Mumbai and have shown great enthusiasm,” Golins told The Sunday Leader.
Sri Lanka clinched the plate championship of the Mumbai Sevens recently beating Malaysia 24-17 in extra time.
Gollins, who took over as Sri Lanka coach two months ago, says the team has built a close knit around him and have also progressed on the field.
“Don’t get me wrong these boys are good rugby players. I just gave them some ideas to improve their game and it has worked well,” he said.


Radika Hettiarachchi, Saliya Kumara, Nigal Ratwatte, Chula Susanth, Srinath Sooriyabandara (Vice Captain) and Fazil Marija (Captain) a

Sri Lanka sevens Captain Fazil Marija said the presence of the new coach has helped the side in its performance on the field.
“He is a great coach. He brought in a change in our training and game plan. The boys are feeling good and are committed to do well,” he said.
Marija said the team has undergone a tight training schedule over the past few days in preparation for the Asian Rugby Sevens.
Sri Lanka face Japan in their first game of the Singapore tournament and Gollins says the team will take each game as it comes.
On his stay in Sri Lanka, Gollins says he has enjoyed his stint so far with the team and is also impressed with the facilities on offer for rugby in the country.
“Yes cricket is the biggest sport in Sri Lanka but rugby has a huge history in this country and the future looks very exciting. There are some really good facilities for the players and I am told more are coming up

3 Comments for “Sri Lanka pumped up for Asian Rugby Sevens”

  1. MH

    This is great news finally Rugby is taking off in Sri Lanka. Hats off to Gollins who has moulded the SL 7′s team in to a champion outfit and its great that players have changed their attitude and learning from the coach.I was satisfied when SL went down to Hongkong fighting in the last tournament. We wish you best of Luck and thanks for SLRFU,The Coach,Players for taking SL forward despite those negative bricks minded people who will always criticize the progress.I am sure Namal is a huge tower of Strenghth behind rugby in SL being a player too.Great to hear that SL is investing in a massive rugby stadium which no one did so far accept for Premadasa bringing Sugathadasa stadium.We need one badly.

  2. Vijith

    First win and then talk.

  3. Kekula

    Srilanka set your eyes to Russia…All the best to Marija n Co.
    Bring glory to the motherland…

Comments are closed

CG Colombo Gazette

Photo Gallery