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Ashvini, Niklesha shine as Sri Lanka advance to best eight round

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Asian Nations Women’s Cup 2020 Online Chess Championship

Wycherley International School’s Ashvini Pavalachandran and Tharushi Niklesha of Visakha Vidyalaya scored consecutive wins to help Sri Lanka advance to the best eight round of the Asian Nations Women’s Cup 2020 Online Chess Championship. Their victories helped the country secure a crucial win (against Australia) and a draw (against Singapore) in the last two rounds.

Sri Lanka were ranked 11th in the 31 team competition after the seventh round and needed a position in the first eight in the ranking list if they were to advance to the next stage which will be held on Friday.

They were given new life by Tharushi Sandeepani, Pavalachandran Ashvini and Tharushi Niklesha in the eighth round as they edged out their Australian counterparts to climb up to the eighth position in the ranking list.

Ashvini and Niklesha then earned points in their games against Liu Yang Hazel and Fang Kun respectively of Singapore to further improve Sri Lanka’s ranking(7th).

The duo also earned half a point each in the seventh round where Women’s International Master Sachini Ranasinghe won a point against her Kyrgyzstan opponent.

The team beat four countries, Kuwait (4-0), Palestine (4-0), Syria (3 ½-1/2) and Australia (3-1) and leveled scores against Bangladesh (2-2), Kyrgyzstan (2-2) and Singapore (2-2). Lebanon (3-1) and Kazakhstan (4-0) were the teams to beat Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka scored 11 match points out

Sri Lanka had a disastrous start as they lost 4-0 against Kazakhstan in the first round. However Kazakhstan failed to reach the business end of the championship after being ranked tenth.

They bounced back in the second round when Nethmi Fernando, Ashvini and Niklesha scored points to beat Kuwait 4-0. The third round saw Tharushi Sandeepani and Sachini Ranasinghe scoring points to draw level against Bangladesh (2-2).

Ashvini was the sole winner for Sri Lanka in the contest against Lebanon in the fourth round.

In the fifth round Ashvini, Ranasinghe, Niklesha and Tharushi Fernando won against Palestine while Tharushi Sandeepani, Ashvini and Ranasinghe won a point each in the sixth round. Niklesha also earned a half a point in that round.

India, Philippines, Iran, Vietnam, Mongolia, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Kyrgyzstan were the top ranked teams after nine rounds. The quarter-final round will commence on Friday.

Meanwhile Sri Lanka men’s team were eliminated after their nine rounds as they were ranked 18th.

Women’s Team:

Sachini Ranasinghe (Captain-WIM, Nf3 Chess Club), Nethmi Fernando (Women’s National Chess Champion/ Girls High School, Kandy), Sandeepani Tharushi (Devi Balika Vidyalaya), Ashvini Pavalachandran (Wycherley International School) and Tharushi Niklesha (Visakha Vidyalaya). (RF)



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Sports

Nethsara scores second century

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Under 19 Division I Cricket 

Tharusha Nethsara scored his second century of the tournament and Sithuka Gunawardena and Dasith Senal took three wickets each as Isipatana beat Ananda by 93 runs in the Under 19 Division I limited overs tournament match played at BRC ground on Tuesday.

Nethsara faced 146 balls and scored nine fours and four sixes in his knock and put on a first wicket stand of 134 runs with Naveen Kanishka, who made 47.

In reply to Isipatana’s 241 runs, Ananda were dismissed for 148 as Gunawardena and Senal shared six wickets between them.

At Asgiriya, Rahal Amarasinghe and Theeraka Ranatunga scored less than run a ball half-centuries for Trinity, before the latter produced a four wicket haul for them to register 59 runs win over Nalanda.

In the other match played yesterday, Maliyadewa pulled off eight runs win over St. Anthony’s, Katugastota as Charuka Herath and Gayana Weerasinghe shared seven wickets between them to contain the visitors to 200 runs at Kurunegala.

Results

Isipatana beat Ananda by 93 runs at BRC

Scores:

Isipatana

241 for 9 in 50 overs (Tharusha Nethsara 113, Naveen Kanishka 47, Kevin Samuel 37, Tharuka Ashel 22; Induwara Wijeratne 2/44, Ayesh Shashimal 2/40)

Ananda

148 all out in 37.4 overs (Maleesha Perera 45, Iruth Gimsan 30, Induwara Wijeratne 20; Sithuka Gunawardena 3/20, Dasith Senal 3/40, Kevin Samuel 2/23)

Trinity beat Nalanda by 59 runs at Asgiriya

(45-overs a side match)

Scores:

Trinity

211 all out in 44.1 overs (Rahal Amarasinghe 57, Theeraka Ranatunga 50, Manula Kularatne 42; Janula Indusara 2/27, Eranga Jayakody 2/39, Vinod Kaldera 2/24, Sajith Vithanage 2/28)

Nalanda

152 all out in 41.5 overs (Rusiru Vilochana 70; Theeraka Ranatunga 4/43, Dinuka Tennakoon 2/17)

Maliyadewa beat St. Anthony’s Katugastota by eight runs at Kurunegala

Scores:

Maliyadewa

208 for 6 in 46 overs (Amesh Tennakoon 58, Chamath Hettiarachchi 34, Ushan Bimsara 33n.o.; Kaveesha Piyumal 2/42)

St. Anthony’s

200 all out in 45.5 overs (Mohamed Aaqil 58, Kavindu Heshan 30, Induwara Galapitage 26; Charuka Herath 4/34, Gayana Weerasinghe 3/40, Thavisha Balasooriya 2/35)

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Isuru, Uththara establish new meet records in the 400 metres

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Western Province Schools Athletics Championships

by Reemus Fernando

Sprinter Isuru Kaushalya emerged as the strongest contender for the best athlete’s award in the boys’ category of the Western Province Schools Athletics Championships after setting a new meet record in the Under 20 boys’ 400 metres on day three of the event at the Sugathadasa Stadium on Tuesday.

The athlete from Ananda Sastralaya, Matugama clocked 47.4 seconds to establish a new meet record in the Under 20 boys’ 400 metres final yesterday. He was the firm favourite for the title after clocking a notable sub 47 seconds feat at the recently held Sir John Tarbat Senior Athletics Championships.

With his notable performance, Kaushalya became the first athlete in history to have clocked sub 48 seconds in the 400 metres at these championships.

The World Junior Championships (2021) participant was also the winner of the 200 metres of that age category as he clocked 21.4 seconds to win on Sunday. He was also among the favourites for the 100 metres title after qualifying for today’s final with a feat of 10.9 seconds. He has not competed at national level in the 100 metres and might skip the final to make space for a specialist sprinter to take a place on the podium.

In the Under 20 girls’ 400 metres Jayeshi Uththara of Holy Cross College, Gampaha slashed more than a second off the existing meet record to win her pet event. Uththara who has turned tables on her senior counterparts at national level competitions won the title with comprehensive ease as she clocked 55.9 seconds to win.

In the Under 18 boys’ 400 metres, Thurstan’s Salamuthu Jayathilaka clocked 48.6 seconds to win, while Shehani Wijetunga of Ave Maria Convent Negombo won the first place in the corresponding girls’ event with a feat of 58.4 seconds. She was also the winner of the 200 metres on Sunday.

Shalomi Rashni of Lyceum Wattala won the Under 16 girls’ 400 metres in a time of 59.9 seconds. Oshada Jayamanne won the Under 16 boys’ 400 metres for St. Benedict’s when he clocked 51.1 seconds.

The results of other events held yesterday were not available for media.

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Sports

When rugby ace Lanil travelled from Passara to Colombo and back for national team practices

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Lalin Tennakoon (sporting white sweat band) at the Rugby 7’s game in Hong Kong.

by Harischandra Gunaratna

Former Sri Lanka Rugby captain Lanil Tennakoon in an interview with The Island said that he was compelled to ride his 650cc BSA motorcycle from Passara to Colombo and back covering nearly 450 km to attend national team practices.

He said that he had to be at Longdon Place by 4.30 pm for practices and back at work at Passara to supervise the tea manufacture and plucking the following morning.

Lanil who was attached to Gonakelle Estate in Passara had to endure the rigorous routine because his boss was a very strict administrator who was not supportive of sports and refused to release his Sinnadorai (Assistant Superintendent) for rugger practices even if it was at National level.

Reminiscing his childhood, Lanil said that he inherited his love for sports from his late father John Tennakoon who represented St. Anthony’s College Katugastota at boxing and cricket and later the Police.

Lanil had to move from Trinity College, Kandy to Kalutara Vidyalaya when he was nine years old as his father was poted as HQI of the Kalutara South Police Station. He recalls, playing with a rugger ball and kicking the ball in the compound of the HQI’s quarters at Ferry Road, Kalutara North during the two years he was at Kalutara. On being re-admitted to Trinity College he attended rugger practices religiously but never made it to the College first XV.

Captaining his house rugby team was the highest achievement during his school days.

Lanil joins the select band of Trinitians who donned the Sri Lanka jersey without representing the school. Others are Willie Ratnavale, Dr. Tony de Sylva and Y.C. Chang.

The burly second rower said that he was not the only Trinitian to don the Sri Lanka jersey without representing the alma mater.

Lanil received his baptism to club rugby after he was chosen to play for the leading planters club, Dickoya Maskeliya Cricket Club team in the hills, led by Bede Johnpullai in 1971 and later represented Dimbulla, Uva, Kandy SC, Havelocks and CH & FC. He also captained the Up Country XV against visiting foreign teams.

He was known for his bone jarring tackles, and brilliant place kicking and he was a regular in both the national XV and 7’s rugger teams.

Lalin with wife Sandra.

Lanil a place kicker with a bull’s eye has contributed with his boot for many a victory during his long rugby career and he celebrated 50 years as a rugby player last year. His crowning glory came when he was appointed as captain of the Sri Lanka XV and 7’s in 1980. He led the Sri Lanka teams that year at Hong Kong Sevens and Rugby Asiad in Taiwan.

Many sports enthusiasts are unaware that Tennakoon was a fiery fast bowler and represented the CCC in the Daily News Trophy games. The team included former All-Ceylon cricket captain C.I. Guanasekera and former national cap Channa Gunasekera among others. He played cricket until the day CH rugby coach Darley Ingelton saw him bowling to the Sri Lanka poolists including Duleep Mendis practicing at the CCC nets where he had to attend rugger practices and read him the riot act and said “Young man you have to chose either cricket or rugby”

Lanil Tennakoon the sports star married his sweetheart, former Good

Sheppered Convent, Kandy athlete Sandra Bertus and they have three children Devaka, Yoshini and Devshan, the eldest Devaka following the father’s footsteps is also a tea planter.

Tennakoon had a 5 ½ year stint in Mozambique and Rwanda imparting his expertise to the plantation companies and now in his 70’s continues his tea planting career at Powysland Estate in Dayagama.

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