‘Battle of Kotte’ commences today at Colts grounds | Daily News

‘Battle of Kotte’ commences today at Colts grounds

ST. Thomas’ College, Kotte team: 1st row seated from left: Kaweesh Samaraweera, Jerome Chandrasekera (coach), Prasanna Ramanayake (MIC), D.M.W. Kiriwandeniya (Vice Principal), Charuka Dilshan (Vice Captain), Rev. Fr. Rector Nilantha Uduwaka (Principal), Deshan Perer (Captain), A. P. Sharmali Kumari (Vice Principal), Rev. Sister A. P. Robert (Asst. Pricipal), Sanjeewa Kadawatharachchi (Cricket Manager) and S. Reshan Williams. Back row standing from left: Ashen Chamuditha, Malindu Perera, Tharusha Chanuka, Ji
ST. Thomas’ College, Kotte team: 1st row seated from left: Kaweesh Samaraweera, Jerome Chandrasekera (coach), Prasanna Ramanayake (MIC), D.M.W. Kiriwandeniya (Vice Principal), Charuka Dilshan (Vice Captain), Rev. Fr. Rector Nilantha Uduwaka (Principal), D

Sri Jayawardanapura MV team: 1st row seated from left: Heshan Thilakarathna (Coach), Jayathilaka Bandara (Vice President-Sports), Kanishka Maduranga (Vice Captain), D.D.A. Wanaguru (Principal), Buddhika Chaminda (Captain), W. M. R. C. Wijesooriya (Deputy Principal), Yasintha Rajawansha (MIC). 2nd row standing from left: Dumindu Gauishta, Kavishka Gihan, Janith Akash, Hasitha Hishan, Thinal Seniru, Nimesh Thiwankara, Lisuka Dinasara, Nadun Priyasanka, Pasindu Akarshana. 3rd row standing from left: Rishith Ishara, Lakshitha Kumara, Sampath Nishshanka, Dihan Ransika and Chamod Supun.

The 41st ‘Battle of Kotte’ between St.Thomas’ College, Kotte and Sri Jayewardenepura M.V. (Formerly Christian College), Kotte will be worked off today and tomorrow at the Colombo Colts grounds.

Kotte Thomians are captained by Deshan Perera and will have Charuka Dilshan as his deputy. Rev.Fr. Rector Nilantha Uduwaka is the Principal of St.Thomas’ College, Kotte and the team is coaced by Jerome Chandrasekera. Sri Jayewardenepura M.V. will battle under the captaincy of Buddika Chaminda and Vice Captain Kanishka Maduranga. D.A.D.Wanaguru is the Principal of Sri Jayewardenepura M.V. and Heshan Thilakarathna is the coach.

The two principals of both Schools E.D. Thambimuttu of Christian College, Kotte belonging to the Church Missionary Society (CMS) and Duncan de Silva of St. Thomas. college, Kotte belonging to the Catholic Church met together on the invitation of Mr. Thambimuttu and decided to commence the big match between the two schools in Kotte. Christian College is the oldest and the first English CMS School established in 1822 in Sri Lanka by Rev. Samuel Lambrick and St. Thomas’ College is the youngest Catholic school in Kotte extablished by Rev. Fr. W.Z. Dabrera (O.M.I) in 1928.

The two Principals decided to play the cricket match in their College grounds at Kotte from 1941. The first captain of Christian College was Nandadasa Walpitage and first captain of St. Thomas’ College was M.D. Rathnasara.

In 1950, this annual cricket big match was named as the ‘Battle of Kotte’ and Percy R. Perera captained Christian College while M.D. Milton captained St. Thomas’ College Kotte that year. The match was played at Chrisitian College grounds and C.M.S. won by 163 runs.

The ‘Battle of Kotte’ challenge trophy was donated by the first captain of the Christian College K.J. Ranasinghe. This shield was made by pure silver from his parents’ Jewellery collection.

His two sons, Kenneth and Keerthi also studied at Sri Jayawardenepura M.V from 1953-1965. Keerthi played for the college team in 1965 and scored two centuries in the same year. After the school was taken over by the Government, the name ‘Christian College’ was changed to Sri Jayewardenepura Vidyalaya in 1963.

That was the year of 13th ‘Battle of Kotte’ in which the St. Thomas’ College, Kotte won by 67 runs under the captaincy of Ananda de Silva. Sri Jayewardenepura was captained by W.D. Nissanka. The match was played at St. Thomas’ College grounds.

In the following year, Sri Jayewardenepura Vidyalaya (Formerly Christian College) abandoned the big match with St. Thomas. college, Kotte and played their big match with Ananda Shastrlaya, Kotte for almost 13 years.

Battle of Kotte was resumed in 1975 for a new trophy donated by G.N. Perera and played at Police Park, Bambalapitiya. Sri Jayewardenepura Vidyalaya was captained by Gamini Gamage while St. Thomas’ College was captained by Kingsley Perera in that year. Before that two friendly games were played at Malay Grounds and and Health Grounds in 1973 and 1974 respectively. Both matches were won by Sri Jayewardenepura Vidyalaya. Another memorable big match was played in 1983 where the Kotte Thomians recorded victory in the last ball of the day, chasing a very low target of 86 runs.

The opponents were sent back to the pavilion by just 72 runs, thanks to Palitha Liyanage who captured 7 wickets for 26 runs in the second innings. Last Outright win recorede in 2003 when the St. Thomas’ College won the big match undert the captaincy of Aron Janz.

The Old Boys Associations of both Schools have taken the task of organising the annual big matche and the ondayer along with the Veteran’s encounter on rotation basis. The organizes of both Schools invite past students to come forward to assist in whatever the way they can, to keep the tradition going.


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