By Chris Dhambarage
St. Peter’s College delivered a stunning blow as they brought down the high riding Isipathana College outfit 32-15 in a high profile Inter-Schools Under-20 League Rugby Tournament match worked off at Bambalapitiya on Saturday (18).
The Peterites who went into the game as the underdogs came out with a stupendous performance as they went on to seal a memorable triumph while collecting their points from three goals, one try and two penalties after the scores were 15 all at half time.
Isipathana of course had a very poor outing with a number of unforced errors especially in the second half as they suffered their first defeat in the current season having responded with just three unconverted tries.
The Peterites’ victory also had a great amount of significance as they were able to record their first win over Isipathana since 2010 where they triumph under the captaincy of Keith Gurusingha.
This time it was the dynamic full back Diyath Fernando who masterminded a historic victory for St. Peter’s with a tremendous performance which completely surprised their opponents.
In fact, St. Peter’s made their intentions clear from the kick-off and were able to completely rattle the visitors while scoring twice inside the opening 20 minutes of play.
However, the Peterites could not consolidate their position from there onwards and Isipathana simply came back into the game with three successive tries to level the scores 15-15.
The Peterites looked a completely different outfit in the second half as they created a number of scoring opportunities and also held on determinedly to frustrate their opponents through some excellent defensive work.
Dashing centre three quarter Theekshana Dissanayake was undoubtedly the most outstanding player for St. Peter’s as he had the satisfaction of scoring a hat-trick of tries
Even then, it was their reliable fly half Stephen Sivaraj who actually controlled the game for the Peterites from the base with his booming kicks to touch and through some intelligent play.
Sivaraj was able to gain valuable territorial advantage for his team and also successfully cleared the defence on many occasions when the side was under tremendous pressure.
He also inspired his team by converting three of their four tries in addition to putting over two vital penalties which turned out to be quite decisive in the end.
Isipathana were never allowed to play their natural game in the second half and were deprived of several scoring opportunities as the gallant Peterites fought magnificently until the final whistle.