Vishwamithra Jayasinghe the dazzling winger | Daily News

Vishwamithra Jayasinghe the dazzling winger

Vishwamithra Jayasinghe
Vishwamithra Jayasinghe

The players who occupy the winger’s positions are usually among the fastest in a team. They will be instrumental in scoring heavily for the team which they represent. Vishwamithra Jayasinghe was one of the players who had a dazzling run down the flanks in scoring heavily for the teams he represented from the time he launched his rugby career from school to clubs later with the National team bringing honour and fame to the country.

Vishwa who had a nickname ‘Jaye’ was born in 1990 in Polhengoda. His father is Gunapala Jayasinghe business man and mother is Anoma Ramani a housewife. He has two sibling’s Sankapali Wasundera and Yashoda Swaranamali the younger sisters. He joined Isipathana College as a primary class student in 1996. From his young days he had a liking for rugby and started his career with the college under-13 team in 2003. He was mainly attracted to the game by his cousin Veediya Bandara, another stalwart who donned the Pathana first XV jersey in the 90’ s. He also used to play tap rugby during their interval where rugby was passionate at school. During the weekends he used to witness rugby matches at Havelock Park which also motivated him towards handling the oval shaped ball. His first tournament in his illustrious career was in 2003, at the under-13 Schools Tournament, under the captaincy of Migara Madugalle and jointly coached by Thushara Bandara and K.Wettasinghe. In 2005, he played in the under-15 team under the same captaincy of Migara jointly coached by D.P.Udayasiri and K. Wettasinghe where they became All Island and Western Province Champions.

In 2006, he played in the under-18 age category under Dinusha Chaturanga’s captaincy coached by Hisham Abdeen where they won the All Island and the Western Province Ten a side Tournament. Next year in 2007, they won the same tournaments representing the same age group captained by Sajith Saranga and jointly coached by Bimal Perera and D.P. Udayasiri. Same year he was elevated to wear the first XV jersey under Damith Udayanga’s leadership where they won the Thurstan Golden Jubilee sevens tournament. From there they surged ahead to clinch several major tournaments like Singer Sri Lankan Airline International Schools Sevens and the All Island Schools Sevens. In the 15’s tournament they became Runners up in the school’s league tournament and in the Milo Schools knockout tournament which turned out to be the most successful rugby revival for them after Isipathana team was demoted to ‘B’ division in 2005 and 2006 respectively. The players who played in the 2007 team were Kasun Gamage, Damith Udayanga, Reeza Mubarack, K.Gayan, Sajith Saranga, Niroshan Fernando, Sajith Saranga, Uthpala Seneviratne, Dinusha Chaturanga, Migara Madugalle, Srinath Sooriyabandara, Ashan Gallage, Shehan Dimithri and Prasad Devinda.

The year 2008 too was a fruitful one for him especially in the Sevens arena winning four tournaments under the captaincy of Dinusha Chaturanga coached by Shamly Nawaz. They ended up becoming the Milo Knockout tournament runners up losing to St. Peters in the final. Moreover, they lost a few league matches by narrow margins against St. Peters 7/8, St. Thomas 14/16 and Kingswood 6/9 and were placed fourth in the League points table. The same season he was instrumental in scoring hat trick of tries in a league match against St. Anthonys, Kandy at Havelock Park for the All Island Ole Rugby Schools Sevens. He put up a scintillating performance to score 10 tries in the Tournament while his team mate Srinath Sooriyabandara planted 13 tries and became the best player in that sevens tournament. Subsequently, he was selected to play in the Junior National team which toured South Korea under the captaincy of his school mate Dinusha Chaturanga which consisted of other team mates Srinath Sooriyabandara, Niroshan Fernando, Sajith Saranga, , Dinusha Chaturanga representing Isipathana. In 2009, he was appointed as the Vice-Captain of the team under the leadership of Niroshan Fernando coached by Shamly Nawaz where they became Runners Up at the All Island knock-out tournament

After his eventful school career, he joined CR and FC in 2010 to play under the captaincy of Dushanth Lewke. In the second round league match in Colombo against Kandy Sports Club, who were defending champions, they lost to CR in the final minute of the game. (12-14). Kandy was attacking in the CR 22 territory and he dashed into the centre and intercepted a pass from Kandy Player to score under the post covering 80 meters ground which was an unblemished event in his rugby career, which apparently was the last season where Kandy was defeated. He continued playing for CR till 2011 once again under the captaincy of Dushanth Lewke ending up winning the inter club sevens championship in 2010. In 2012, he moved to the newly inaugurated ‘A’ Division Club- Up Country Lions in Nawalapitiya and played under Dilip Selvam’s captaincy. They became the fourth in the league in their inaugural season under Imthi Marikar’s coaching. In 2013, he re-joined CR and played under Ishan Noor’s captaincy. During his tenure at CR was coached by Viraj Prashantha, Bilal Yusuf, Grant Dwyer, Nimal Lewke and Laga respectively.

In 2014, he crossed over to don the Navy Sports Club jersey under Yoshitha Rajapaksa and emerged League Champions coached by South African coach assisted by Leanard De Silva. He finally played for Kandy from 2015 to 2018 and was a member of the Triple Crown winning team under the captaincy of Fazil Marija which included Gayan Weeraratne, Roshan Weeraratne, Richard Dharmapala and went on to win the Inter club sevens championship too.

From 2010 to 2016 he was Selected to Represent the National Sevens team that competed at the HSBC five Nations tournament in 2010, the Singapore Cup Champions, Commonwealth Games Rugby Sevens in 2010 India, Asian Games Rugby Sevens 2010 China, Carlton International Rugby Sevens in 2010 in Sri Lanka. Asian Rugby Sevens Series from 2010 to 2016. His National coaches during his career were Ben Gollings, Yohan Taylor, Matt Turner, Nilfer Ibrahim, Imthi Marikar, late George Simpkin and Mothilal Jayathilake.

In the Meantime he represented the Franchise Sevens tournament from 2012 to 2017 representing the Western Warriors/Northern Gladiators/Southern Sharks/Etisalat Panthers and Access Kings in the 7's Tournaments along with World Class International Sevens Specialist foreign players in the calibre of Waisake Naholo, Lote Raikunbula, Nafi Tuituvaka, New Zealnders-Osea Kolinaso, Setefano Cakau, Pio Tuwai, Pet Ravouvou, Sami Kumatani, Nasoni Roko, Lutu Malangi, Jona Tuitoga, Lio Naigasava, Fijian Rupena Levasa, Samovan David Halaifonua Tongan.

He holds a IRB Level 1 Coaching Certificate and Currently Doing an Advance Course Online Strength and Conditioning from an Australian Affiliated Academy. His wife is Bhagaya De Zoysa and son is Osein Mithra.