By Shamseer Jaleel
The Sri Lanka Rugby National Selections Committee brought down the country’s junior squad to 15 players and sent it for the approval of the Sports Minister yesterday.
The touring squad will consist of 12 players with three non-touring standbys. The outfit will be led by Thomian skipper Naveen Heenakankanmge. Former Isipathana, Police and Kandy scrum half Sudath Sampath will once again coach the outfit which will look to defend the Asian Sevens title which they won last year under Kevin Dixon.
The only surprise omission from the squad of 15 was that of Yuzran Lantra. He was brilliant this season for Zahira College, finishing as the highest try-scorer in the school league.
The final touring squad of 12 players will be named on 30 August. Isipathana scrum-half Harith Bandara will be out due to an injury.
Chathura Seneviratne (St. Joseph’s) , Ranindu Padmashanka, Adeesha Weeratunge, Chamod Fernando (all from Isipathana) , Dinuk Amarasinghe (St. Anthony’s, Katugastota) , Thanuja Maduranga (Navy SC), Avishka Lee (Wesley), Naveen Heenakankanmge (Capt.) (St. Thomas) , Theekshana Dassanayake (St. Peter’s), Wajid Fawmy, Sandesh Jayawickrema, Suranga Bandara (all from Police SC), Lahiru Herath, Supun Dilshan (Vice Capt) (both from Navy SC) and Ramesh Fernando (Havelocks SC)
Coach - Sudath Sampath
Pool A - Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Taipei, China and the Philippines
Pool B - South Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore and Uzbekistan
Women’s - India, Singapore, Uzbekistan, Malaysia, China, Hong Kong and Thailand