Wesley’s wonder boys promise another rugby marvel | Sunday Observer

Wesley’s wonder boys promise another rugby marvel

26 June, 2022

The Wesley College rugby squad that will be showcased in the 2022 inter school season comprising Hafiz Thabeeth, Miraj Miskin, , Shem Elisha, Akinda Gammanpila, Ruchith Hapugalle, Chamod Nimsara, Nimshan Lawrence, Isuru Perera, Rigesh Muralidharan, Shaveen Jayawardena, Maleesha Thirangama, Avishka Jayasinghe, Shane Hopwood, Nithila Sanwidu, Tharusha Jayaweera (captain), Abdullah Sidhik, Kawesh Jayman, Shehan Fernando, Sheal Samuel, Dineth Srimantha, Shaheen Jayman, Mishael Amath, Kavitha Amaneth, Saadhi Rasheed, Ravindu Ishantha, Wahid Hossain, Aaron Corera, Derron de Silva, Saabith Musheed, Kaizer Lye, Shem Mendis, Shafeer Hassim, Dillion de Silva, Sandul Gammanpila, Jehan Weerabangsa

Nine years ago they shocked the schools rugby arena by smashing down many a fancied rival team to be crowned the undisputed Milo trophy knock out champions in 2013 and are now aiming to take hold of the League title that has eluded them since 1956 when they played their maiden match.

Early this week mothers and fathers swarmed over to see their proud off-spring receive new sets of the double-blue Wesley College jerseys climbing on stage one by one witnessed by a Pastor who recited prayers and blessed the team for the 2022 season that kicked off yesterday.

“These boys can do wonders, keep supporting us, keep believing in us,” Wesley captain Tharusha Jayaweera declared.

While most rugby playing schools were put in disarray over the past two years crippled by the Covid 19 pandemic, Wesley has been able to keep a set of bubbly players together and Jayaweera’s team is one that won a junior championship title in 2018 and will be showcased in what will be their farewell year as a collective unit.

But Wesley College, a school that prides itself on producing the country’s first governor general in Sir Oliver Gunatilleke, know that prizes could mean very little if the values of sportsmanship are not wholeheartedly emphasised as they also prepare to be role models in an arena tarnished by violence and rowdy spectator conduct.

Wesley is the least tainted but the school will take nothing for granted.

“I want to make sure you play good clean rugby. We belong to Wesley and we must set an example to the entire rugby fraternity,” said College principal Avanka Fernando.

Among the invitees who graced Wesley’s new jersey presentation were the illustrious ex-sportsman Navin de Silva, his trophy winning son and captain of the 2013 team Rahul and Air Commodore Shehan Wijenaike who if he wants could boast of many laurels in many sports in which he represented the school team.

“It is a big privilege to wear this (Wesley) rugby jersey in a competitive and challenging environment,” said Wijenaike.

“Success is determined the way you play as a team. Rugby is a better place to see team-work in action.”

With a passionate school following, Wesley is expected to play their matches to full houses and their players have already showcased market value raking in several financial godfathers and commercial partners in an era when some of the more fancied schools have drawn up budgets that could go upto to Rs.40 or 50 million that includes high profile coaches.