Sudarshana Muthuthantri will lead the Sri Lankan national men’s Seven’s rugby team for the upcoming Asian Seven’s Olympic qualifier in Hong Kong on November 7and 8.
Muthuthantri who has just taken over the captaincy from the experienced Fazil Marija, who stepped down as Sri Lanka rugby sevens captain after the conclusion of the Asian’s seven series in Colombo.
Sri Lanka did extremely well in the recently concluded Asian rugby seven’s series where they finished as the fourth best team. Sri Lanka has been slotted in pool B together with the Philippines, Malaysia, Iran and host Hong Kong.
Pool A comprises Japan, China, Singapore, South Korea, and Chinese Taipei.
The top two finishers of both groups (A1 v B2 and B1 v A2) will make the semi final line up in the Cup competition.
The winner of this tournament will get to book its tickets to Rio for next year’s Olympic Games.
The Tuskers are strengthened with the return of experienced players like Jason Dissanayaka, Nigel Ratwatte, Shenal Dias and Hirantha Perera following their recovery from injuries. These players had represented the country in many overseas tournaments before and carry loads of experience. This time The Tuskers have named a competitive squad which has the blend of both youth and experience.
The notable absentee in this regular squad is the talented utility three quarter player from CR&FC Rochana Hettiarachchi who is out with a serious knee injury.
Rugby Selection Commitee Chairman Micheal Jayasekara when contacted said, “Though we are in a very tough group, we are looking at beating Hong Kong and securing at least the second spot. With this talented set of squad I personally believe it’s achievable. Let’s keep our fingers crossed” concluded Jayasekara.
Sri Lanka will play their first match against Iran on November 7th at 7.36am (Sri Lankan Time) and on the same day will play their remaining two fixtures against Malaysia at 10.14am (Sri Lankan Time) and Hong Kong at 3.52pm (Sri Lankan Time). Tuskers will play their final match on November 8th against Philippines at 9.02am.
The Sri Lankan Squad
Sudarshana Muthuthantri( Captain), Dhanushka Ranjan, Shenal Dias, Hirantha Perera (Havelock’s SC), Fazil Marija, Anurudda Wilwara, Richard Dharmapala, Srinath Sooriyabandara, Gayan Weerarathna, Nigel Ratwatte (Kandy SC), Kanchana Ramanayake, Jason Dissanayake (CR&FC)