Competition kicks off on 21 Feb.
By Shamseer Jaleel
The school rugby league will see an early start this year, with action kicking off on 21 February as defending champions Isipathana College lock horns with Dharmaraja College.
With the club league and Clifford Cup coming to an end in February, rugby crazy fans in the country can enjoy champagne rugby dished out by the schoolboys, with Isipathana College eager to defend their title.
The Sri Lanka Schools Rugby Football Association (SLSRFA), along with Sri Lanka Rugby (SLR), is set to sign the sponsorship deal with Dialog Axiata for the upcoming season. The estimated amount is in the region of Rs. 80 million. Singer Sri Lanka, the usual sponsors of the league competition, and Nestle, the regular knockout sponsors, will end their support after more than two decades of sponsorship.
The first round of matches will run uninterrupted for five weeks before the group standings are decided by the end of March. There will be two groups consisting of six teams each, with the top four teams from each group competing for the Cup Championship while the bottom two teams from each group and the top four teams from Division II will compete for the Plate Championship.
After the completion of round one there will be a two-week break before the second round commences. The knockout tournament will follow soon afterwards the league in the middle of May.
Isipathana College, Royal College, St. Peter’s College, St. Anthony’s College, St. Joseph’s College, Dharmaraja College
S. Thomas› College, Mount Lavinia, Science College, Trinity College, Wesley College, Zahira College, Prince of Wales College
First round schedule
Week 1 (21-27 February): Isipathana vs. Dharmaraja; Royal vs. St. Joseph›s; St. Peter›s vs. St. Anthony›s; S. Thomas› vs. Prince of Wales; Science vs. Zahira; Wesley vs. Trinity
Week 2 (29 February-6 March): St. Joseph›s vs. Isipathana; Dharmaraja vs. St. Anthony›s; Royal vs. St. Peter›s; Zahira vs. S. Thomas›; Prince of Wales vs. Wesley; Science vs. Trinity
Week 3 (7-13 March):Isipathana vs. St. Anthony›s; St. Joseph›s vs. St. Peter›s; Dharmaraja vs. Royal; Wesley vs. S. Thomas›; Zahira vs. Trinity; Prince of Wales vs. Science
Week 4 (14-20 March): St. Peter›s vs. Isipathana; St. Anthony›s vs. Royal; St. Joseph›s vs. Dharmaraja; S. Thomas› vs. Trinity; Wesley vs. Science; Zahira vs. Prince of Wales
Week 5 (21-27 March): Isipathana vs. Royal; St. Peter›s vs. Dharmaraja; St. Anthony›s vs. St. Joseph›s; S. Thomas› vs. Science; Trinity vs. Prince of Wales; Wesley vs. Zahira