The early hours of December 30th surfaced with horrifying news that shocked the entire rugby fraternity of the country. It was the tragic death of the beloved Kokila Sammandaperuma aka ‘Marco’.
An unexpected turn of events resulted in the demise of a cheerful, friendly and a humble individual of the sport. The CR & FC prop forward was a gleeful character in the rugby field and the tragic news was hard to digest for many in the rugby fraternity.
In an exemplary act to honour their fallen mate, the CR & FC team retired Kokila’s #1 jersey for the season. A remembrance ceremony was held before the second round kicked off on Saturday(5th) at Longdon Place, where the family members of Kokila were handed over the number 1 jersey.
In the absence of skipper Kavindu Perera, Tarinda Ratwatte and Omalka Gunaratne; two players who have been closely associating Kokila presented the parents of their beloved friend with the jersey. In addition, a two-minute silence was observed before the commencement of the game on Saturday.
The CR & FC team, as well as the Havelock Sports Club team, wore black armbands to honour their fallen hero.
‘Marco’ was a selfless player. In his club rugby career of 5 years, he had made friends with almost everyone. Throughout the week, all teams took time before kick off to observe a two-minute silence in memory of him.
The name Kokila Sammandaperuma will surely be missed in the team cards but the memories he made on and off the field will surely be remembered for a lifetime.