Peterites in shocking win over Joes | Daily News

Peterites in shocking win over Joes

Action from the match between St. Joseph’s and St. Peter’s  (Pic by Rukmal Gamage)
Action from the match between St. Joseph’s and St. Peter’s (Pic by Rukmal Gamage)

St. Peter’s College produced a superb second half rally to beat their traditional rivals St. Joseph’s College 25-24 in their 62nd annual Battle of the Saints rugby encounter played at Havelock Park yesterday.

The Peterites, who were trailing 3-21 at half time came back magnificently to score three tries and a drop goal in the second half and went on to retain the Rev. Fr. Basil Wirathunga Shield for another year.

This was a dramatic turnaround for St. Peter’s, who were almost down and out at one stage as they conceded three early tries to their opponents after having made a poor start to the game.

In fact, St. Joseph’s looked the better side in the first 35 minutes of play as they dominated with some terrific loose play from their forwards and supported well by the speedy three quarters.

The Josephians drew first blood in the ninth minute of play following some good passage of play as their nippy scrum half Vihanga Randeepa sneaked through after Number Eight Naveen Marasinghe had carried the ball a good 10 metres. As the momentum was with St. Joseph’s during this period, they further increased their lead with centre three quarter Vishika Fernando adding the finishing touches to a splendid move under the post. St. Peter’s got their scoreboard underway with a good 25-metre penalty from Dineth Jayaweera in the 29th minute to reduce the margin to 3-14 at that stage.

However, St. Joseph’s scored their third try of the match almost with the stroke of half time as flanker Sachinthana Waidyanatha went over the blind side following a beautiful three-quarter move.

The second half turned out to be more productive for St. Peter’s as they scored back-to-back-tries through Pasindu Thakshila, Sudesh Jayawickrema and Yumith Shihara to snatch the lead 22-21 in the 58th minute of play.

However, Ruchitha Rodrigo put St. Joseph’s back in the lead 24-22 with a crucial penalty in the 61st minute but Windya de Mel fired a drop goal from 30 metres out to seal the contest in favour of St. Peter’s.

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