Kodituwakku going great guns in Melbourne
A product of Vidyartha College Saman Kodituwakku was the first Sri
Lankan to take up the position as Registrar cum Team Manager of the
Melbourne University Rugby Football Club. According to the standards
over there it is considered a very high position within the sports
bodies in Australia.
Saman played for Vidyartha College in 1987 and '88, but during these
two years Vidyartha College could not achieve much in rugby due to the
insurgency. Saman while at school in 1986 as a weightlifter broke the
junior national record.
In 1992 inter club rugby season Saman turned out for Kandy Sports
Club as a flanker and it was in 1992 that Kandy Sports Club won the
first ever title in rugby. In the following year he played for the Kandy
Sports Club "Lions".
From Kandy he came over to Colombo for employment. While working at
Pure Beverages and later at Hayleys Group he played for the CR & FC
"Bees" in 1996.
In 1999 he migrated to Australia and settled down in Melbourne and
played for Melbourne University Rugby Football Club, Victoria's premier
Rugby Union Club with over 110 years of history in the field of rugby.
In 2007 and 2008 he had to stay off the game due to a knee injury.
In 2009 Saman became the Manager of the Melbourne University Rugby
Football Club, and in the following year he was invited to serve in the
Committe. He thus became the first overseas member to take up a post in
the committee in its history.
In 2011 too he continued to be in the committee and this year (2012)
he has been invited to serve in the committee once again with a
additional post as Registrar.
He also took up refereing and became an assistant referee in Victoria
Rugby Union in 2010.
In the same year he became an Australian Rugby Union recognized
junior coach. Saman is a member of the Australian Defence Force (Army)
since 2008, and is currently pursuing a Bachelor's Degree of
Arts/Criminal Justice at the Victoria University under the defence
In the field of sports Kandy has established a proud record of
producing some of the top most sports people in Sri Lanka in a wide
range of sports such as rugby, cricket, football, swimming, hockey,
athletics, table tennis, lawn tennis, boxing, swimming, basketball, iron
sport, golf and even baseball, which has only been introduced into Kandy
Kandy has produced national captains in football, cricket, rugby,
hockey, and athletics.
Unlike the rest of the country, rugby is the most popular sport in
the region. This is because of, Kandy Sports Club being the reigning
Club Rugby Champions in the national league and the knockouts for almost
over a decade and half, - (League 15 times in 19 outings in a row - 19
times 20 outings in a row).
The Singer Sri Lankan Airlines Rugby 7's tournament was an annual
international event attracting nations from all over the world for ten
long years. Sad to say this tournament is no more. Rugby has boosted the
sport in every corner of the city with all schools taking up to the
Trinity, Kingswood, St. Anthony's, Dharmaraja, St. Sylvester's, Sri
Sumangala, Sri Rahula, and Vidyartha hold top positions in the country.
Today Kandy has the best rugby grounds in the country, that is the
Nittawella rugby stadium, which caters for every school in the region.
Few days back, Kandy Sports Club had their annual general meeting
and, once again Dr. S Kapuwatte was elected president for the good work
he has done from the day he took membership at the Nittawella club in
Malik Samarawickrema the king maker of the sport, Hemaka Amarasuriya
and Dr. S Kapuwatte are the Trustees with D Madugalle as the Patron.
Senior Vice President is E Van der Poorten with Hafiz Marikar and L
De Zoysa as Vice Presidents. N. Ratwatte is the new secretary with R.
Gooneratne as Treasurer.
Ground secretary N Gunasekara, Pavilion Secretary U Balasuriya, Games
captain (P & T) S Wijasinghe.
Committee is made out of L Wijasuriya, H Yatawara, R Daulagala, S
Tennakoon, A Ranasinghe, C Rajakaruna, R Ratwatte, M M Jiffry,
J.B.Attanayake, A Nanayakkara. Rugby Committee - L Wijasuriya Chairman),
Coach John Taylor, Kapila Silva and N Jamaldeen, SLRFU Representative S
Siddik, and CPRFU Representative H Yatawara, Lionel de Silva is the
Administrative Secretary, and Chandra Liyanage Assistant Administrative
Cricket is widely played in Kandy with the city having three first
class teams Kandy Cricket Club, Kandy Youth Club and Saracens Cricket
Club. Kandy is host to the Sri Lanka nationals cricket team with two
Test status grounds, Asgiriya International Stadium and the newly built
state-of-the-art Pallekele International Cricket Stadium.
Both stadiums have held World Cup matches. Trinity last years league
champions are the top followed by St .Sylvester's, Vidyartha, Sri
Sumangala, St. Anthony's, Dharmaraja , Sri Rahula and Kingswood.
Sports such as hockey at school and club level is in healthy state.
With most of the schools, especially girls' schools dominating the game.
Kandy District Hockey Association is quite active and taking the game to
a higher level in the district.
The first ever hockey tournament called the P T Rjan Trophy is back
again after many years from February. Boxing is also at its best with
schools like St .Sylvester's, Dharmaraja, Kingswood, Vidyartha,
Peradeniya, Sarasavi Uyana, Trinity giving of their best.
Once again Kandy YMCA is all out to give a fillip for boxing.
Volleyball the national sport of Sri Lanka under the new leadership from
Kandy's new boss Dilum Amunugama MP is picking up, and football, though
it is the common man's game, but sad to say it is now not what it was
taken a back seat.
Billiards and snooker have hardly anyone playing it. However
basketball, table tennis, lawn tennis, badminton and even swimming are
popular due to the high participation of students and schools.
Although Kandy has several sports bodies they need to get actively
involved at the highest levels. Kandy's urgent need is proper ground
facilities. During the time when the Bogambara Stadium was under the
Municipal Council, these three sports flourished in Kandy.
The sporting fraternity of Kandy appeal to the Sports Minister
Mahindananda Aluthgamage who is doing a great job, to give a push to
sports in Kandy, with proper people involved.