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BCCSL elections held behind closed doors!
One horse race

by Mike Andree and R. Palipane
It was a one horse race at the Cricket Board elections, held behind closed doors and in a hush hush atmosphere, at Sports Ministry Auditorium on Sunday, June 11 .

Sri Lanka’s second major conflict, turned out to be a farce with the withdrawal of four of the five candidates in the race for the presidency. This left Thilanga Sumathipala an uncontested winner.

At 3.30 p.m. the media, after being kept out of the hall for nearly five hours, decided to stage a walk out enmasse , due to the delay in releasing the official results, despite the election to all posts having been long completed. Various excuses were given by the officials and the presiding officer, Milton Amarasinghe, Director of the Department of Sports Development, who should have made the official announcements was not to be seen. All efforts by the media to get into the hall were barred by armed cops and they were told that they could not be allowed into the hall, despite all election proceeding being completed, as their was a private meeting going on amongst the newly elected office bearers.

Jayantha Dharmadasa, a leading contender for the post of president withdrew from the contest saying, in a letter to the presiding officer, Milton Amerasinghe, "several constitutional provisions have been ignored and violated in the convening of the meeting and in the recognition of the electors/voters and acceptance of nominations. At all times you have not acted lawfully. In my view the meeting and the subsequent election is contrary to the constitution, contrary to law and null and void. In this context, I wish to withdraw my nomination and the consent given for the post of president".

The other three who withdrew their candidacy were, Sumith R. Perera, Anuruddha Pollonowita and Ari Kannangara.

There were a string of withdrawals all along as most of the candidates for the other major posts withdrew leaving the way clear for these posts to be filled by the only remaining candidates. With all this taking place no official announcement was made.

It was only after the media walked out that the results were faxed to their respective organizations.

All newspapers were informed, days prior to the elections, that only two reporters from a newspaper and one photographer from an organization would be permitted to attend the AGM. However, the media were not allowed into the hall where the AGM and the elections were held. They were permitted into the Sports Ministry compound after having to undergo checks at two points including a body search at the gates of the venue. But what stumps all is how seven members, including two photographers, from a Sinhala News-paper, belonging to an interested party, were permitted to enter the venue.

The security provided for this election was even far more intensive than that provided at the country’s presidential elections. Even a senior cop admitted it.

The major questions now are, why the hush hush in the conduct of the elections, and why did the presiding officer and the elected candidates, not face the media.


WPRFU Under 24 rugby tournament
CR&FC dump Police

by Althaf Nawaz
CR and FC coming out for the first time, in the Western Province Under-24 Rugby tournament, played for the "Le Bond" trophy, crushed Police SC by 30 points (2 goals, 2 tries, 2 penalties) to 5 (a try ) at Longden Place, on Sunday.

CR, possessing a well balanced side, with a blend of youth and experience, dished out some excellent ball play. Their three quarters were far superior than that of their opponents. Whenever the ball was on in their possession, they ran it down the line, and this saw them score four times. Their heftily built forwards dominated the set pieces and set scrums. They rucked and mauled well and slung out the goodball to the "threes" to get the maximum points.

Police on the other hand, played positively in the first falf. But they failed to keep up the momentum and this saw them edging towards defeat.

CR put the first scoring points on the board with a penalty put over by Anjelo Wijeratne. Police bounced back gallantly to reduce the gap with a spectacular try scored by flanker Hiran Rasanga. The towering forward, barged through the CR defence, after collecting the ball off a five meter line out, to touch down by left corner flag. The try went unconverted.

Nineteen minutes in to the first half, Wijeratne increased CR’s lead with a 30 meter penalty, after the Police three quarters were spotted off side, four minutes later, winger Anjelo Weerakkody created inroads in the Police defence to plant the second CR try, by the right flag, which went unconverted.

Three minutes before the short interval, CR centre Rushdi Faiz sneaked through to touch down mid-left, after a superb three quarter move. This try too went unconverted and the score line read 16-5 at the breather.

CR looked a much more composed and well organised outfit after the short break. They were set to go all out and capitalised well on the opponents mistakes. Centre Irosh Fernando, with his vast experience having played with the senoirs, kept up the momentum as he went solo to score under the post. Wijeratne made no mistake with conversion. Police, finding it difficult to cope with the pace set by the Red-jerseyed men, played well in patches and failed to play to a game plan. CR making use of the situation, ran in another try, this time through their replaced winger E.Wekadapola. Zulifikar Halimdeen added the extra points to take them to a convincing victory.

Roshan Deen, a senior referee who refrained from blowing matches last season, took up the whistle and controlled the game.

Havelocks win

Havelocks beat Tri Star by 24 points (2 goals, 2 tries) to 3 (a penalty) in the earlier game. For winners R. Gamampathi (2) H.Panditharatne and C.Kodagoda scored a try each. Kasun Waduge goaled two of the tries. Sudeshan put over the solitary penalty for the losers.


Marvan Atapattu Sri Lanka’s new vice captain

by Althaf Nawaz
Marvan Atapattu has been appointed as the deputy skipper of the Sri Lankan cricket team for the first cricket test match against Pakistan which begins on June 14 (Wednesday), at SSC grounds, Maitland Place.

Following a successful tour of Bangladesh, the trio of national selectors opted for Atapattu as Sanath Jayasuriya’s deputy in place of Mahela Jayawardena. Atapattu proved that he could perform to satisfaction under any circumstances and that fighting century against Pakistan in the final at the recently concluded Asia Cup cricket tournament certainly endorsed that.

The out of form Mahela Jayawardena is hopeful of another chance to prove himself following his pathetic performances in the recent past.

Meanwhile, Tillekeratne Dilshan and Indika de Saram have been sidelined and NCC’s left arm wicket-keeper-batsman, Kumar Sangakkara who is in form has been included. Dashing left hand opener Avishka Gunawar-dena wicket-keeper batsman, Prasanna Jayawardena and left arm leg spinner Rangana Herath too have been recalled. Kaushalya Weeraratne was not considered due to injury and his place has been taken by Dilhara Fernando.

This test match is the 100th encounter in Sri Lanka history, and the only survivor of Sri Lanka’s 18 years of text history is Arjuna Ranatunga.

The squad:

Sanath Jayasuriya (Capt.), Marvan Atapattu (V. Capt.), Arjuna Ranatunga, Mahela Jayawardena, Aravinda de Silva, Muttiah Muralitharan, Chaminda Vaas, Romesh Kaluvitharana, Russel Arnold, Upul Chandana, Nuwan Zoysa, Avishka Gunawardena, Rangana Herath, Prasanna Jayawardena, Kumar Sangakkara and Dilhara Fernando.


Windsurfing on Aug. 20

by Shirajiv Sirimane
The annual mid-summers winsurfing championship conducted by the Winsurfing Association of Sri Lanka will be held on Sunday, August 20 at Airport Garden Hotel, Katunayake.

This year too the event will be co-sponsored by Lanka Sportseizen and Airport Garden Hotel.

"We wanted to have the event in a big way with foreign participants. But decided against it due to the situation in the country", said Tilak Weerasinghe Chairman LSR. He said that around 30 local competitors are likely to participate in this event.

Entries for the event close on August 10 with Gamini Algama, Co-ordination Secretary, 211, Hospital Road, Kalubowila.

Attractive sailing gear awaits the winners of the event.


Lanka’s U-16 spikers leave for Asian C’ships

Sri Lanka’s Under-16 spikers will leave for Singapore today to play in the Asian Hockey Championship to be held from June 15 to 25 at the Delta Stadium.

The Sri Lankans will come up against Asian hockey giants Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Korea and Kazakastan. But the local side is young and brimming with confidence.

The Sri Lankan squad is coached by Sumith Dissanayake and assisted by Palitha Wasalage.

According to a senior official the squad had undergone training at the Peradeniya grounds and at the Astro Turf at Reid Avenue. (AN)


Three records at Junior Weight-lifting meet

by Hafiz Marikar Kandy sports Corr.
The Kandy District Junior Weight-lifting Championship was held at the Peradeniya University Gymnasium, with top notch iron sportsmen taking part. Three new records were set up at this meet in the 51 kg, 85 kg and 94 kg category and three weight-lifters were selected as Bestlifters.

In the 94 category, W. P. S. Abanwella of Deerandana M. V. snatched 45.5 kg and 60 kg in the clean and jerk with an aggregate of 105.5 kg. Ransilu Jayatilake of Kingswood College, taking part in the 85 kg category, set up a record of 160 kg with a snatch of 70.5 kg and 90 kg in the clean and jerk.

In the 51 kg category N. Kodithuwaku of Deerandana MV had a snatch of 70.5 kg and clean and jerk of 80 kg aggregating 140 kg to set up a record in the 51 kg class.

The three best lifters at this meet were N. Kodithuwaku of Deerananda MV, who is an under 15 lifter and the other two were K. Wijewickrema of the Kandy TCA in the under 18, and P. N. Dayan in the under 20, who is from the Kandy YMCA.

At this meet the young lifters gave a superb display and a big hand should go to the local Weight-lifting Association and the controlling body for job well done in organising this meet, which saw some top lifters from lesser known schools and clubs taking part.

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