Sri Lanka had to be content with the runners-up position at the Asian Under-20 Sevens Rugby Tournament which concluded in Hong Kong on Saturday.
After enjoying a great deal of success on the opening day of the tournament, Sri Lanka failed to add the vital finishing touches and were beaten 0-36 by Hong Kong in the final encounter.
The Lankans were thrown out of the game by their superior opponents even before half time as they conceded four tries and were trailing 0-26 at the break.
Sri Lanka never looked like making a comeback after this early setback as they conceded two more tries in the second half before surrendering the final to their opponents quite meekly.
However, Sri Lanka entered the final with a great amount of confidence after they had earlier completely rattled the South Korean outfit 33-5 in the semi-finals.
Sri Lanka also had the satisfaction of winning all their matches in Group ‘A’ with convincing victories over the Philippines (24-0), China (43-7) and Malaysia (26-5) respectively.
Sri Lanka beat Philippines 24-0, Sri Lanka beat China 43-7, and Sri Lanka beat Malaysia 26-5.
Sri Lanka beat South Korea 33-5
Hong Kong beat Sri Lanka 36-0.
SL to meet Philippines in opener
By Shamzeer Jaleel
Sri Lanka will take on the Philippines in their Asian Youth Rugby Sevens Group ‘A’ opening fixture at the Kings Park Rugby Grounds in Kowloon, Hong Kong today (4).
Sri Lanka’s second match of the tournament will be against China followed by the clash against Malaysia.
Sri Lanka’s final group match will be against the Chinese Taipei on Saturday (5).
Sri Lanka are hoping to defend their Asian Youth Rugby Sevens title which they won under Kevin Dixon last year.
The Sri Lanka Team which touched down in Hong Kong three days ago were able to get three good training sessions to get acclimatize to the climate in Hong Kong.
Sri Lanka Squad: Adeesha Weeratunge, Chamod Fernando, Raidu Padmashanka, Dinuk Amarasinghe, Avishka Lee, Naveen Henakankanmge (Captain), Theekshana Dassanayake, Wajid Fawmy, Sandesh Jayawickrema, Suranga Bandara, Lahiru Herath, Supun Dilshan, Sudath Sampath (Coach).
Pool ‘A’: Sri Lanka , Malaysia, Taipei, China and PhilippinesPool ‘B’: South Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore and Uzbekistan
Fixtures (SL time): August 4: Sri Lanka vs Philippines at 8.40 a. m, Sri Lanka vs China at 1.36 p. m, Sri Lanka vs Malaysia at 4.10 p. m.August 5: Sri Lanka vs Chinese Taipei at 8.58 a. m.
SL keen to defend title in Hong Kong
By Shamzeer Jaleel
The Sri Lanka Under-20 rugby outfit led by Naveen Henakankanamge will leave the Island today (1) in preparation for the Asian Youth Sevens Tournament which will be held on August 4 and 5 in Hong Kong.
Sri Lanka will be hoping to defend their Asian Sevens title which they won under Kevin Dixon in the two-leg event which was held in 2016.
In 2016, Sri Lanka won the Malaysian leg and ended as the second best team to Hong Kong but on aggregate they won the series.
Speaking to Daily Mirror, Sri Lanka Head Coach Sudath Sampath said: “I am very thankful to Sri Lanka Rugby (SLR) for supporting me in the preparations for this tour. The side is well balanced with some of them having played ‘A’ Division rugby, Mercantile Sevens and Sri Lanka Super Sevens which is a very good exposure for them. We have another set of players who did really well at school level.”
Sampath also said there are some players who have performed well at club rugby last season.
“We had a good preparation and we will take game by game. We have the potential to defend the title once more. If we end round one on top then we can avoid Hong Kong and a date against South Korea in the semi-finals. This will give us a good preparation for the players.”
Sampath who was a former star sevens player for Isipathana, Police SC and Kandy SC will once again look to defend the title which they won under his guidance last year in Hong Kong on aggregate.
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