By Harsha Amarasinghe
Sri Lanka Rugby (SLR) has opted to bring in a foreign referee for the mouthwatering clash between CR & FC and Kandy Sports Club at Longdon Place on Saturday (4).
Although the decision has still not been confirmed, it is expected that SLR would appoint a Hong Kong-based referee for this fixture.
A top official of SLR stated that a game of this magnitude requires the best refereeing.
“It is a vital match for both Kandy Sports Club and also for CR & FC. Overall this is a very important game for the whole tournament so we opted for the service of a foreign referee,” the SLR senior official told Daily Mirror.
However, Sri Lanka Society of Rugby Football Referees (SLSRFR) has been left ‘disappointed’ by the SLR’s move to appoint a foreign referee.
“We are disappointed and also quite surprised given that our referees have done a very good job this season. I know various clubs have different opinions about refereeing but we are very concerned about this decision because we had already appointed referees for the games,” SLSRFR President Nizam Jamaldeen told Daily Mirror.
The former referee also stated that the particular decision confuses SLSRFR amid the good progress they have made.
“Our referees have made a good progress and three of them are part of the Asia Rugby panel, so this really confuses me,” added Jamaldeen.
Both CR & FC and Kandy Sports Club have won all the four games they have played but defending champions Kandy leads the points table by two bonus points.