By M. Shamil Amit
Wesley College and Vidyartha College will clash in the President’s Trophy Inter-Schools Under-19 Knock-Out Rugby Tournament first semi-final encounter at the Royal College Sports Complex in Reid Avenue today.
The two teams received walkovers in their respective quarter-finals after the defending League champions Royal College and S. Thomas’ College pulled out from the competition.
Wesley led by utility player Mursheed Zubair will be the favourites while Vidyartha led by number eight Kavishka Bandara had a successful season while competing in the Plate Championship.
The Wesleyites after suffering a shock defeat against Science College, Mount Lavinia bounced back to beat Trinity College in their last league match to secure the fourth position in the points table.
In addition, Wesley will be looking to earn a place in the final after a lapse of five years having won the President’s Trophy for the first time in 2013.
Vidyartha on the other hand will be seeking to continue their good performances having recorded four wins against Mahanama College, Colombo, St. Sylvester’s College, C. W. W. Kannangara MMV and Thurstan College respectively.
In the second-round clash for the Plate title, Vidyartha were held to a draw by Zahira College, Colombo before recording three straight wins against home town rivals St. Anthony’s College, Sri Sumangala MV, Kandy and D. S. Senanayake College Colombo to end as runners-up to Kingswood College.
Wesley: Mursheed Zubair (Captain), Tharindu Samarakoon, Srithyesh Thiyagarajah, Dineth Dinuja, Raveen Fernando, Akinda Gammanpila, Dexter Goonetileke, Samuel Ogbebor, Jenosha Mendis, Sahan Hansaja, Tharindu Walpitage, Shaveen Jayawardena, Kavindana Perera, Eranda Harshana, Vishwa Welagedera, Hafiz Thabeeth, Theekshana Vithanage, Tharusha Jayaweera, Nisal Perera, Jeesa Wijegunawardena, Shannon Gunasekera, Ruchith Hapugalla and Nimshan Lawrence.
Vidyartha: Kavishka Bandara (Captain), Tharindu Ratnayake, Naleen Kumara, Rukshan Weerasinghe, Tharindu Nirodha, Kalhara Jayawardena, Kavinda Wijeratne, Supun Dissanayake, Nimshan Kaluarachchi, Bhagya Kaluarachchi, Sathsara Kalugampitiya, Manoj Gunaratne, Chamodya Kodagoda, Arosha Ratnayake, Shamitha Thilakaratne, Hasitha Kumara, Hasantha Anthony, Imasha Sewwanda, Nadeesha Seneviratne, Kalana Sathsara, Nipun Weerasinghe, Dilruk Edirisinghe, Isuru Lakshan and Chethana Bandara.