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13th August,  2006  Volume 13, Issue  5

First with the news and free with its views                                     First with the news and free with its views                             First with the news and free with its views                                    

Sports

Stage set for 10th South Asian Games

Susanthika and Dharsha

By Hishan Welmilla

The stage is set for the 10 the South Asian Games which will commence next Friday (August 18) with a spectacular opening ceremony at the Sugathadasa Stadium Colombo. This will be the biggest ever multi-sport event to be hosted by Sri Lanka. Eight countries including Sri Lanka are expected to take part in the 10th SAG games. World-ranked athletes from India and Pakistan will use the South-Asian Games in Sri Lanka as part of their preparation for the 15th Asian Games in Doha, 2006.

Around 2,500 athletes are expected to compete in 20 sports. Athletics and swimming head the list of sports, with judo and archery new to the programme this year. Other sports include football, squash, wushu, badminton and kabaddi.

India, with a squad of 400, will be the largest team in attendance, followed by Pakistan with 350 athletes and Bangladesh with 300. Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal and Afghanistan complete the line-up for the tournament.

The original South-Asian Games, hosted by Nepal, took place in 1984. Susanthika Jayasinghe who will lead the Sri Lankan contingent will be one of the medal prospects in this year along with Damayanthi Darsha. Susanthika will opt to win medals in her pet event and will look forward to do it in a style, perhaps with two new records. Jayasinghe looks to be in good shape to win two gold medals in the two sprint events for women, the 100 and 200 metres. She returned good time at the Senior National Athletic Championships and has vowed to win these two events. Thus she is favoured to carry the national flag into the stadium at the opening and closing ceremonies.

 Sprinter Damayanthi Dharsha too will be a another gold medal prospect and she too is in good condition and will  go all out to bring glory and honour to Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka has put lot of faith in their contingent this year and predicts gold medals in athletics, boxing, hockey, kabbadi and a couple of indoor sports.

The organizers have promised a grand opening and closing ceremonies with a magnificent fire works display. China has presented rowing equipment and all the fireworks for the opening and closing ceremonies. The fireworks alone will cost many millions of rupees and are on their way to Colombo.

The estimated cost for the event would be well over rupees one billion. Sri Lanka Telecom is the main sponsor of the SAG. The other sponsors are Airport and Aviation Services, American Water, ANCL, Apollo Hospital, Cargills, Ceylon Cold Stores, Electricity Board, Petroleum Corporation, Coca Cola, Dockyard General Engineering, Embassy of the People's Republic of China, Enterprise Technology, Hameedia, Senid, Lanfurrd and Semler, Lanka Technologies, Molten, Nawaloka Hospital, People's Bank, Ports Authority, Red Bull, Rent a Com (Pvt)., Sports Sri Lanka, SLBC, Sri Lanka Export Credit Insurance Board, Export Development Board, Institute of Info. Tech., Insurance Company, Rupavahini Corporation, Tea Board, Sterling Flowers, Stone 'N' String, Swiss Cheese Company, Swiss Timing, Xerox, Bank of Ceylon, Mas Holding, DLB, Sampath Bank, Hayleys' Group, St. Anthony's Group, Brandix, Ceylinco Group, NSB, NLB, HSBC and HNB.

A night bazaar will also be opened around the Vihara Maha Devi Park to coincide with the SAG. Cultural items and musical shows and cultural shows will be held to keep the visitors occupied.

Controversial issue

With  the SA games around the corner a controversial  situation has arisen  over the  inclusion of American born Andrew Abeysinghe to the Sri Lankan swimming squad named for the SAG games.

The disturbed parents were supposed to have met the Sports Minister, Kumaranatunga and even complained to President, Mahinda Rajapakse on this issue. The sneaky inclusion of Abeysinghe has raised many a question around the swimming circle. How can a person who did not take part in the trials has gained a position in a national squad leaving aside some of the swimmers who have taken part in the trials is the million dollar question asked around.

The trials were compulsory for the selections and even Sri Lankan record holder of several events and the Asian Swimming  Champion, Conrad Francis was also not included in the team as he too did not participate in the trials.

 Andrew Abeysinghe allegedly is not a Sri Lankan citizen and the only way he could have been included is for him to have applied for a dual citizenship of Sri Lanka and the United States. But that is also in question.

 Eshan Fernando, Mihiri Kandanarachchi and Dasun Perera, the three young swimmers who  had received letters in regard to their inclusion as reserves in the Lankan swimming team  have been receiving step motherly treatment from the authorities, Why.  The parents of those young swimmers hope that these children at least will receive their national colours which is the normal practice even if one is a reserve. Let us hope that the Minister of Sports will do justice to these school children who have done magnificently at the trials.


 Tri-nation series...

Lankans tip the scale

By Beamer

Sri Lanka will be hoping to extend their dominance of the two Test series into the shorter version of the game when the Unitech Cup 2006 triangular limited overs cricket tournament gets underway on Monday.

Sri Lanka who beat South Africa two nil in the Janashakthi test series will renew their rivalry once again as the two teams meet in the curtain raiser match of the tournament under lights at the R. Premadasa Stadium.

Meanwhile India, the third team competing in this tournament will launch their campaign with a day night match against Sri Lanka on Wednesday at the same venue. The tournament will be of great importance for all three teams as they are in the process of building up the team ahead of the International Cricket Council (ICC) Champions trophy Mini World Cup which will be staged in October in India.

The Sri Lankan team is looking forward to stretching their winning streak having made a historic five nil whitewash against England last month. This time however they will be under tremendous pressure as they are up against two equally good teams who are determined to bounce back. 

The South Africans of course will like to forget their test series debacle and face the three?nation tournament with a positive approach under the guidance of a new captain. But their preparations have been severely effected even before the start of the tournament with minor injuries to some of their key players.

The South African team management has requested paceman Dale Steyn to stay back in Sri Lanka as cover for injured Makhaya Ntini. The absence of Nitini was really felt on the final day of the second test as South Africa went down fighting by a solitary wicket. Ntini is a doubtful starter for Monday's game due to a hamstring injury. He who was able to bowl only eight overs at the P. Saravanamuttu Stadium and is presently being treated by South African physio Shanne Jabaar.

 Steyn was originally expected to return to Johannesburg with Nicky Boje, Hasim Amla and Jacques Rudolph after the Test series but as the leading South African wicket taker in the test series, Steyn has now been the ideal stand bye for Nitini. In addition paceman Shaun Pollock is nursing a sore lower back and skipper Mark Boucher has an injured left elbow.

 In contrast the Indian team has been strengthened with the return of master batsman Sachin Tendulkar following a long injury. The veteran of 363 one day internationals and the leading run?getter in the shorter version of the game with 14,146 runs, Tendulkar will be more than anxious to prove his fitness. The presence of Tendulkar is certain to provide great inspiration to the Indian team who are strong favourites to win the tournament.

Even then India have not had a great amount of success in Sri Lanka in therecent past and this will be another real test and a tough challenge for Rahul Dravid and his men. In fact India have not won a one?day tournament outright in Sri Lanka since 1998 and suffered a 4?1 series defeat on their recent tour of West Indies.

With the World Cup in the Caribbean just seven months away, skipper Rahul Dravid and coach Greg Chappell will want Tendulkar to remain fit and as hungry for runs as before.


Rugby - Inter-school - by Hafiz Marikar

Kingswood trounce Thurstan 67-0

Defending Schools' League Champions Kingswood College made a runaway 67 points to nil win over Thurstan College in their inter school Division 0ne "A" Group rugby encounter.

Kingswoodians who are just behind St. Peter's College in the table, scored a punishing win, in a lopsided match at the Bogambara Stadium. Kingswoodains tally comprised  eleven tries out of which six were converted. At the breather the Kingswoodians led 34/00.

Kingswoodains had Thurstan on the defence for the entire spell of the game, the winners attacked from the first whistle, to a man they played good rugger. They dominated the lineouts, loose play and their passes were excellent.

They rucked, drove and powered their way to completely outplay the Thurstan side. The platform for the win was laid by a ferocious display of running and cover by the spirited back row. The forwards played hard and had the better in all the moves.

Their back division too was good  and they tackled well and kept the opponents on their toes.

Priyantha Gunaratne refereed

Both the junior games went in favour of the Kingswoodians. 


St. Sylvester's beat St. Aloysius

The St. Sylvester's - St. Aloysius rugger match played at Nittawela Stadium went in favor of the Sylverstians they made 58 points against 5.  At half time the winners led 34/00.

Beaten by weight and experience, the losers did their part well though they lost by a big margin. In this game Sylverstians did very thing well, and their knowledge was good and should be on top this season.


NDB Bank - Golf Masters at Victoria

NDB Bank, the premier local bank has joined hands with Victoria Golf & Country Resort to bring together the inaugural "NDB Bank Golf Masters 2006."

 This tournament which is open to all golfers with a valid handicap will be played at the picturesque Victoria golf course on  16 September.  All entrants to the NDB Golf Masters have a chance of winning a return air ticket to the Far East.

"The affiliation of NDB will be a key to the success of this tournament. Their unstinted support is greatly appreciated. The NDB bank golf masters will be a 18 hole stableford open to all golfers with a valid handicap.

Plus the players have a chance of winning a return airline ticket a destination in the Far East! " Commented Mike Varney General Manager of Victoria Golf & Country Resort The tournament will be keenly contested by many of the top gentlemen and lady golfers in the local golfing arena. Entries for the NDB bank Golf Masters are now open.


One last time at home, the Sanath show

samat on Sunday

LET'S step down from the deliriously happy world that Mahela Jayawardene's men transported us to and get down to life's businesses.

Let's look at the list of future fixtures; and goodness, gracious, an occasion of quite some significance has gone unspoken and unnoticed: in the One-day Tri-Nation, starting tomorrow, an icon of one-day cricket is about to play before his home audience for the last time.  

After this Tri-nation, also including India and South Africa, the Sri Lankans are not due to appear on home shores until the Bangladeshis call here in June-July of next year. Which means that Sri Lankans will be seeing the last of Sanath Jayasuriya, performing in person, over the coming few days; precisely, on four days, barring injury, and a fifth, providing qualification for the final. Waving goodbye to those near and dear is never an easy thing to do, and surely will bring a lump to the collective throats of local followers, as it will, no doubt, to the man's himself.

Jayasuriya, whose unbridled butchery of bowlers has turned him into a symbol of the arresting excitement of one-day cricket, has publicly said that he'll retire from the game after the 2007 World Cup, in the Caribbean next March-April. The official announcement and ensuing ceremonies will, of course, come before and after the WC. But late last March, in announcing his "unintended" retirement, this is what he said: "Not playing Test cricket will help me keep fit and allow me to play on until next year's World Cup. I will definitely retire from all cricket after that."

Barely a month later, he changed his mind, joined the team in England - and disturbed a hornets' nest. The cynics, so, might suggest that Jayasuriya's decision to retire after the next WC is just about trusty as Frank Sinatra's many farewells- the 'retired" legend who came back to stage and song again and again and to ousted the young pretenders from the popularity charts.

For Jayasuriya, though, there's no better stage to bid goodbye than the 2007 World Cup. After all, he rode to legendary heights on the back of his astonishing deeds in the 1996 World Cup, his first. So, his decision to make his fourth appearance in the 2007 WC his last is logical. And unchangeable too: the event after, in 2011, after all is a bridge too far for the 37-year-old.

It is, of course, premature to be writing epitaphs to his career. There's much overseas duty to be done approaching next year's World Cup: the ICC Champion's Trophy in October November in India; month-long tour of New Zealand in November-December and a re-visit to India in January-February for a Tri-nation involving the host nation and the West Indies.

But it wouldn't be inappropriate to pay tribute to him on this his farewell appearance in his motherland. He, after all, together with Muralidaran, has contributed the most to Sri Lanka cricket's successes, both in Test and one-day.

By any yardstick, the rise of this small-town boy to an internationally reputed, and respected, cricketer is phenomenal. His rags to riches story has been too well publicized to re-tell here. But the thing to admire about this now rich and famous man is that his rural simplicity hasn't been abandoned.

Example: His explosive talents, no one doubts, are the only reasons for his many astonishing deeds. But watching him, as he surpasses each of his 50s and 100s, you'd think that, not he, but a divine hand has produced the achievements: His eyes stare up to the heavens as lips whisper a mantra; a man offering thanks to his deities - same as rural simpletons would at village temples for hopes fulfilled. Sri Lankans will miss those solemn expressions of a grateful man, providing a corner of oasis in the frenetic, hurly-burly world of one-day cricket.

But how much he will be missed, as a cricketer is incalculable. His value as a one-day performer is told best by statistics: in 363 ODIs he's made 11,104 runs, the highest for Sri Lanka and only one of four in the world to break the 10, 000-run barrier; 22 centuries and sixty 50s. Add his 278 wickets and 107 catches, and you wonder if anyone can ever fill his shoes.

It is a comforting thought, though, that Jayasuriya is going to be around until the next World Cup to try and help re-live 1996 and also build those awesome statistics to even more awesome proportions.

For the time being, however, Jayasuriya will want to provide a few memorable moments in this his last show before his home folks. It's a fairly established rule that when Jayasuriya succeeds, so does Sri Lanka, most times anyway. He has a way of pulverizing the opponents into submission. That kind of Jayasuriya-intimidation is more a pre-requisite this time than it had been most times before. And not just because India and South Africa are challengers you can even fleetingly take lightly.

There are other gnawing reasons. In the case of India, there's a serious psychological deficit to overcome. It was sustained last October/November when India won all but one of the seven ODIs. Sri Lanka is still nursing the wounds of that thrashing, as conveyed in Muralidaran's recent promise of "revenge" to the media in South India. That string of defeats was, of course, across the waters. Sri Lanka's cricketers themselves will know the importance of breaking free of India's domination. Because allowing India's dominance to continue in Colombo, too, would mean, well, acceptance that they are beyond conquest. You wouldn't want to be in that sort mindset approaching the World Cup.

One man who can put India in its place is Jayasuriya - a fact that Indians themselves have acknowledged. It's a fact that's best illustrated by events about this time last year: Sri Lanka beat India in all their three meetings in the Indian Oil Cup Triangular here, the first with an injured Jayasuriya, his eyeballs ablaze by the effects of pain-killer drugs, delivering the match-winning blow. There have been many other times Jayasuriya single-handedly destroyed the Indians. In jest, it's said that Jayasuriya is another word for fear in the Indian lexicon.

South Africa, of course, will want to show they aren't far behind Sri Lanka as the 0/2 outcome of the Test series might suggest. The Second Test was lost due as much to misfortune (Nitini rendered immobile on the final day) and missed opportunities (the early let-off of Jayawardene and Mahroof) as the combativeness of the home team. The South Africans, however, are entitled to feel the one-wicket defeat was undeserved - and will look for atonement over the coming days.

So, it all points to a hell-raiser of a tournament, and with Jayasuriya bidding farewell to his followers here, the event is likely to leave us with some special memories. This will be Part 2 of the P. Sara thriller.


Caltex Ruhunu Rugby Sevens launch this week

The Caltex Ruhunu Rugby Sevens kicks off for the very first time in the history of Sri Lankan Rugby on the August 19 in Galle. The event has attracted 16 teams from the Southern region, the healthy numbers reflecting the growth of rugby in the province. 

Rugby has witnessed tremendous development in the south, and a significant highpoint was achieved this year when Galle RFU figured in the 'A division' Interclub Rugby League Tournament. With the inaugural Caltex Ruhunu Rugby Sevens, the organisation and the committee organizers and the committee of the new tournament are firm in their commitment to continue the event long into the future, aiming to fuel southern rugby development rapidly.

Caltex is synonymous with interclub rugby. As the sponsor of the interclub league and knockout tournaments since 2000, as well as the under-23 tournament introduced this season, the organisation has pledged support to the SLRFU to ensure continuing development of the game.

"We have been with rugby for six years and have signed up with the Union to continue our support until 2010.

We will dedicate ourselves to ensure that the game penetrates into the rural regions and is developed there - so essential for development at a national level," said. Kishu Gomes, CEO / Managing Director of Caltex

Over the last decade, other sports too have enjoyed Caltex's generosity. Among the beneficiaries were motor sports, boxing, indoor cricket and volleyball.

Sponsorship of sport is a part of Caltex's business. Through this sponsorship, the organisation provides the right mix for the brand to leverage its power, energy and strength and at the same time symbolises the traits of the game.


Singer Sevens circus comes to Galle, Dimbula

WITH the domestic Fifteens season ready for dispatch to the historians, Sevens rugby takes centre stage, kicking-off with the inter-club Singer Professional Sevens tournaments in late August and climaxing with the popular Singer/Srilankan Airlines International Sevens in mid-September.

The first of the three Singer Professional Sevens events, carrying a prize purse of Rs.500, 000 per event, was held in Colombo in February. The next two, however, were inked for August 25-26 in Ratgama and September 2-3 at Radella. The seven-month gap between the first event and the two others of what is supposed to be a series might seem odd, but the arrangement is not without meaningful intent.

The first in the series serves as a trial for the world-famous IRB Hong Kong Sevens. Its benefit was proved vividly in Hong Kong at last year when Sri Lanka overcame the USA to enter the Bowl semifinal, where it lost in the last seconds to eventual winners, Chinese-Taipei. The next two Singer Pro tournaments were slotted for dates seven months later as they are intended to serve as preparation for the 12-nation Singer/Srilankan Airlines, an IRB recognized event, to be held September 15-17 in Kandy.

The Colombo leg of the Singer Professional Sevens was unfortunately marred by fisticuffs during the final followed by CH&FC's walkout early in the second half. Kandy SC, so, won the final by default - and went up Kadugannwa hill Rs.100, 000 richer than on their downhill journey.

The SLRFU are doubly alert to prevent a repeat of Colombo's nasty scenes in Ratgama and Radella. "We've asked referees to not tolerate anything that even slightly resembles trouble. The laws will be applied, strictly and swiftly - no compromises here," said CEO, Dilroy Fernando, who is also the island's leading referee. 


Host Visakha win 2 titles at chess

At a hugely successful Western Province Inter-school Chess Championships hosted by them last weekend where 120 teams from 51 schools took part Visakha Vidyalaya emerged winners in the girls under 12 and under 19 categories. Girls under 15 category was won by Musaeus College and Visakha under 15 team which was equal second on points ended up in third place after the tie breaker.

The tournament was conducted in an open format but at the end over-all as well as girls champions were chosen in each category. Over-all winners in under 12, under 15 and under 19 categories were Ananda College, Royal College and D.S.Senanayaka College respectively.

Visakha Vidyalaya Chess Club under the guidance of Visakha principal Mrs. R.N.Amarasingha organized this tournament . The organizing committee included deputy principal Mrs. Ajantha PahathkumburaMrs. Muditha Liyanapathirane (P.T.I) teacher in  charge Mrs. Pushpa Degamboda, Mrs. Muditha Madanayaka, Mrs. Manuja Rathnayake, Mrs. Damayanthi Kumarage, Mrs. Lakshmi Wickramasinge and  Ms. Kumari Amaradasa.

Visakha chess teams are presently coached by Dr. Vineetha Wijesuriya, former women's national champion and Mr. Athula Russell, present national champion.

Dr. R.D.Gunaratna, former national player who was also the chess captain of St-Thomas' College in 1974, attended the prize giving ceremony as the chief guest.

Results: Over-all: Under 12 (1)Ananda College (2)Nalanda College (3)Royal College

Under 15 (1)Royal College (2)Musaeus College (3)Kaluthara Vidyalaya Under 19 (1)D.S.Senanayake College (2)Ananda College (3)Royal College

Girls: Under 12 (1)Visakha Vidyalaya (2)Dharmapala Vidyalaya (3)Lindsay Girl's School

Under 15 (1)Musaeus College (2)Devi Balika Vidyalaya (3)Visakha Vidyalaya

Under 19 (1)Visakha Vidyalaya (2) Co/Rathnavali Balika Vidyalaya (3)Vihara Maha Devi Balika Vidy- alaya, Kiribthgoda.


Sri Lanka tri-series, 2006...

South Africa face injury crisis

South Africa are facing an injury crisis ahead of the one-day tri-series against Sri Lanka and India on Monday, with three of their leading cricketers, Makhaya Ntini, Shaun Pollock and the captain, Mark Boucher, all nursing injuries.

Ntini has a left hamstring strain which prevented him from bowling more than 7.2 overs in the second innings of the second Test in Colombo, which South Africa went on to lose by one wicket.

"Makhaya is under treatment and his injury is being monitored closely by the physiotherapist," said South Africa's coach, Mickey Arthur. "But we are confident that he will pull through by Monday. He is due for a fitness test over the weekend and it is very unlikely that he will play any part in the team prior to that."

The fast bowler, Dale Steyn, who was to fly home at the end of the Test series, has stayed back as cover for Ntini. Meanwhile Pollock, 33, a veteran of 102 Tests and 259 one-day internationals, has a niggling injury in his lower back. He bowled just three overs with the second new-ball on that same final day.

Pollock suffered a similar injury in the home series against Australia and was forced to miss the first Test at Cape Town in March. "Probably age and the heavy workload on him over the years is taking its toll," said Arthur.

Boucher, 29, who will lead South Africa in the tri-series, is nursing an injured left elbow after being hit during the second innings of the second Test. "As a precautionary measure Mark and Shaun will be rested from tomorrow's practice game," said South Africa's media liaison officer Gordon Templeton. "Both should be available for selection on Monday."

Templeton added that AB de Villiers would keep wicket for South Africa in their one-day practice match against a Sri Lanka Academy in Colombo on Friday. Ashwell Prince who was replaced as captain by Boucher in the one-day squad will lead the team.

South Africa one-day squad

1 Mark Boucher (capt, wk), 2 Boeta Dippenaar, 3 Loots Bosman, 4 Herschelle Gibbs, 5 A.B. de Villiers, 6 Shaun Pollock, 7 Johan van der Wath, 8 Robin Petersen, 9 Andrew Hall, 10 Andre Nel, 11 Makhaya Ntini, 12 Ashwell Prince, 13 Roger Telemachus, 14 Thandi Tshabalala


South Asian Games Football

Sri Lanka - Maldives will be a closely fought battle

By Hafiz Marikar

The capital of Sri Lanka - Colombo will have the wave of football in full swing when the kick -off of the South Asian Games Football, happens on Monday.

The 2006 SAA games will see Sri Lanka Football Federation welcome the South Asian in a two week long sporting and social event from 14 to  26 August.

This year's South Asian Games football will start on  Monday the 14th, and promises to be a fumble of muscle power and lot of shoving. The grand opening will be a spectacular curtain raiser between India and Afghanistan, and that second game of the day will be between Sri Lanka and Maldives and the last game  will be between Bangladesh and Nepal.

The matches will kick off from 4 pm the first game, the second game will be at 6 pm and the third at 8 pm.

The kick off  comprises  countries like India, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Nepal., Pakistan, Maldives, Bhutan and Sri Lanka. So, the host cultural and sightseeing experience - not to mention the carnival atmosphere as players and spectators enjoy themselves to the full.

There is a request form the Football Federation of Sri Lanka, inviting all football fans to come and join the roar and deafening cheer as the event kicks off, and our game is the second of the day, so will see, all the Sri Lankan football lovers at Suagthadasa Stadium to give a flip up to our lads, to make it game. All Leagues are expected to be in numbers, when Sri Lanka take the field. So, the cheering will be come on Lanka , come on Lanka. Every cheer is expected to be with a Lion flag. to give our players the morale booster.

In the game between Indian and Afghanistan, India should go out as favorites with their young talented side, the Afghans too are capable of upsetting the Indians, and everything depends on the day's football.

The second game will be between Sri Lanka - Maldives, it is going to be a unrelenting brand of rib-bruising football should be on display. The kick off is set for 6.00 pm. under lights.

According to news, both teams are evenly balanced and a good game of exciting football is on the cards, the team which plays a run and pass game should come out as winners. Both sides should battle for possession in this all important game. This will be a vital one for both sides who will be needing plenty of good ball to play their brand of open football.

The forward play of Sri Lanka will have an effect on the Maldivian back division. What the Sri Lankans need in this game is a well engineered and clear cut victory. The Sri Lanka forwards are with plenty of thrust.

The Maldivian XI who have proved to be a fighting side, will look up to their forwards to use the good ball that comes there way to good advantage.

This game has all the making of a hot contest and should draw as big a crowd. The Korean coach Jang Jung with the assistance of D. Chandarsiri and E.B. Channa has given the best, and now it is up to the players to give their best.

Sri Lanka's will be led by Sadun Devinde and his deputy is Dinesh Ruwantilake, both these players who have a good knowledge and playing power should get the boys to give off there best. Much can be expected of  Nisal Nilanga, Duminda Hettiarchchi, Anton Nimal Fernando, Nuwantha Chraka, Nirantha Perera,

Both sides will battle for possession in this game and will indeed be vital one for both sides who will be needing plenty of good clean ball to play their brand of open football.

What Sri Lankans will need in this game is a well engineered and clear cut victory to be on top of this competition. For that players like skipper Sadun Devinde , his deputy is Dinesh Ruwantilake, both these players who have a good knowledge and playing power should get the best out of boys to Nisal Nilanga, Duminda Hettiarchchi, Anton Nimal Fernando, Nuwantha Chraka, Nirantha Perera, allof them a capable of giving a excellent display.

This game has all the makings of a hot contest and should draw a big crowd.

The third game of the day will be between Bangladesh and Nepal. In this game the Bangladesh side should come out as winners, with their experience and knowledge of the game.


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