Niroshan Fernando and his men in pink outplayed the CR lads at Longdon Place earlier today, much to the credit of the Havelock forwards. The scores read 21 points to 5 at halftime in favour of the visitors who managed to end the game 31 – 22 securing a bonus point victory remaining unbeaten going into the 6th week.
Tarinda Ratwatte kick-started the game from right to left hoping his side would prevail in this year’s edition of the ‘Mathysz Trophy’ in the first round of the Dialog Rugby League. But, things did not favour the home team as Dinuk Amarasinghe got things off to a hot start 8 minutes into the game, creating Havelock’s first try, after letting out a silky backhand offload to Chamara Dabare who dove over the whitewash, opening the scoring. Rizah Mubarak made no mistake adding the extra two. (CR 0 – 7 HSC)
It was a one-sided battle all the way down until the 35th min when CR scored their first try through Rahul De Silva who snuck through the defence after receiving Omalka’s offload. Havelock got everything spot on! It was clear that they were playing according to their strengths and that was from the set pieces. As a result, both prop forwards, Dushmantha Priyadarshana and Listan Flatny got their names on the score sheet after scoring two fabulous tries. Especially Flatny, who scored like a back, stepping and dummying after peeling from the defence and sprinting 20 meters. Although Ratwatte missed his conversion, Mubarak continued his success adding the extra two’s putting Havelock in a comfortable position at half-time.
Half Time: CR trailing 5 – 21 HSC
However, as play resumed – Ratwatte put the visitors under immediate pressure after recollecting the ball from his kick and dashing straight under the post. He made no mistake with his kick this time around as CR closed in on the Havies. Thereon, opportunities came CR’s way, but the lacklustre performance in both lineouts and scrums, let them down. Capitalizing on that, Havies made sure they troubled the CR forwards and made every set piece count. It worked like magic! Dushmantha Priyadarshana scored his second try of the game after shoving the red shirts in a scrum, picking the ball back up and diving over. (CR 12 – 25 HSC)
As CR were forced to take quick taps and up the tempo of the game, momentum began swinging their way. They finally realized their mistake of playing too close and too slow and was awarded many penalties and turnovers. Rewarding themselves from that, a three-pointer from Ratwatte and a try by Gayan Dilshan put the Reds back in the game with under 15 minutes of play. But unfortunately for them, the second Vimukthi Rahula caught the CR defence napping it was all over. After he chipped the ball from the back of a ruck in the 5m, all Dabare had to do was get there first and jot the ball down – which he did successfully beating Kavindu Perera inside the try line. Although Mubarak missed the kick, Havies managed to win the game with a bonus point.
Full Time: CR lost 22 – 31 HSC