Thursday, 31 July 2014 01:58
The preparation was not so perfect and the selections was questionable with one or two on tour but still the Sri Lanka Sevens outfit led by Fazil Marija ended the Commonwealth Rugby Sevens in Glasgow on a high note when they secured the Shield on the second day of the tournament.
After a beating against heavy weights England and Australia, the Lankans played their hearts out in a closely contested encounter against Uganda which Sri Lanka ended on the losing side
Coming in to the Plate semi-final Sri Lanka met Barbados and then Trinidad and Tobago in the final which both were won without much effort. A little bit more effort and preparation would have put the team into the Bowl segment which would have taken our ranking to the ninth position out of 16 teams.
A Rugby Sevens world record crowd of more than 170,000 fans over four sessions were treated to thrills, spills and spectacualar tries as the sport’s brand of high-octane action and carnival atmosphere demonstrated why it is one of the hottest Games tickets. This was the highest spectators starting from 1998 when the oval shaped ball game was introduced to the Commonwealth Games.
South Africa ended New Zealand’s dominance of the winning streak with a 17-12 win. This pushed New Zealand for the first defeat in the history of the Commonwealth games Rugby Sevens since 1997. In the bronze medal match Australia, silver medalists four years ago, beat Samoa 24-0. England edged out Wales 17-15 to secure Plate. The bowl was taken away by Canada defeating Uganda 50-7 in one way traffic encounter. Sri Lanka secured Shield for the first time in the history with an easy win over Trinidad and Tobago.
The Sri Lanka Sevens Skipper as soon as he arrived told the Daily FT: “We settled well on the second day. On the initial day it was very tough opponents as you know England and Australia are two of the best sides in the tournament. We did not secure the kick off balls and our defense was poor. On the second day we should have pulled off the Bowl Quarter final against Papua New Guinea which was within our reach. But due to some minor errors it cost us the game. If not for this we would have ended even top in our rankings.
“When we moved in to the Shield semi-finals we secured the kick off ball and we defended well. Our tackling too was on top quality and did not allow the opponents to cross at will. At both matches only one try was scored against us.”