It is going to be big match time again in Kandy, on
5th and 6th March when the oldest big match in the
district known as the battle of the Maroons will be
played between Kingswood and Dharmaraja at the
Asgiriya Stadium for the 104th time. On 12th and
13th of March Kandy’s ‘Battle of the Blues’, between
Trinity and St. Anthony’s will be played for the
94th time, and on 19th and 20th March it will be the
52nd Battle of the Babes between St. Sylvester’s and
Vidyartha with both matches at Asgiriya. The dates
of the fourth big match between Sri Sumanagala and
Sri Rahula are still not fixed.
104th Battle of
The oldest big match in Kandy is between Kingswood
and Dharmaraja, the first big match this season. A
record, since discovered, reveals that the first
match between these two schools had been played on
the lst of July 1899. These two schools have played
matches from 1893 to 1898 but the teams comprised
players selected from the college staff and
students. The series has been marked by growing
enthusiasm and increasing friendly rivalry as the
years advanced. Full details of the series are not
available, but two games are recalled as being of
great interest. In the year 1918, Dharmaraja had
been dismissed in one inning for a total of 9 runs
only striking a parallel with an earlier Royal -
Thomian encounter, in which Royal had been bundled
out for 9 runs in one innings. Another unforgettable
year had been the one in 1949, when the gamed ended
in a tie, with both teams found to have made exactly
the same total at close of play.
In the 61st encounter, a shield was presented in
memory of late C.W.H. Lutersz, who was a teacher at
Kingswood for over four decades, but that shield is
no more and now they play for the T.B. Tennakoon
When these two schools meet on 5th and 6th, it
should be a close game as this encounter is
considered as the biggest and most awaited sporting
event of the two institutions.
The two state-run schools have cherished the annual
match as a fitting climax to the season. The loyal
supporters, old boys, parents, members of the staff
and the public look forward to this fixture with
great enthusiasm and excitement.
The last win by Dharmaraja was in 1980 under Janaka
Mendis and for the Kingswoodians in 1958 under
Dharmaraja College is led by all-rounder Ramesh
Bandara and his deputy is Rahula Ekanayake, Some of
the other players are P. de Silva, Hemal Munaweera,
Sanjaya Kalubowila, Kavinda Weerakoon, Nuwan
Karunaratne, Sandun Weerakody, Susantha Nakawita,
Lahiru Herath and Sasith Gunasekara.
Kingswood depends much on Chamila Gunasekara, Lahiru
Gannoruwa, Indragith Rabel, Lakshitha Madushan and
93rd ‘Battle of the Blues’
Trinity and St. Anthony’s will play in their 93rd
game which is known as the ‘Battle of the Blues’ on
12th and 13th of March at the Asgiriya Stadium.
Cricket at this match is expected to be of a very
high standard with both sides well balanced. This
game is one of the most looked-forward-to events
between these two schools, who are rivals at cricket
for the last 93years.
Trinity’s last win in the series was in 1986 under
the leadership of Thushara Weerasuriya who led the
side to win after 35 years at Katugastota. Trinity
won by 7 wickets with a magnificent knock coming off
the bat of Mevan Ballale and this game was the
Trinitians 22nd win in the series. A result in this
game came due to the sporty declaration of Antonian
skipper Rienzie Perera who threw the game open. The
Antonians’ last win was in 1992 under Umesh de
Alwis, so the Trinitians have won on 22 occasions to
This time Trinity is led by Mohamed Sajid, a fine
stroke maker, he is expecting a lot from his team
and he too should give a good account with the bat.
Deputy skipper Kithmal Wimalaweera too is a good
bat, they have their last year’s skipper Rushan
Jaleel a Sri Lanka Youth player, but sadly they will
miss their star bowler Akila Jayasundara who is
being sidelined due to a back injury. His absence
will be badly felt. Others who are to do well are
Shameera Wijesuriya, Suresh Wickrema, Nirshan
Dickwella, Kheliya Athugoda, Janishka Premasinghe,
Amail Anaz another fine bowler has pocketed many
wickets and should give of his best.
The Antonians are led by Dulash Kumarasinghe who is
a good bat and he will look forward to Adil Reyal,
Hiran Wickremasekara, Yohan Woods, Manoj
Sarachandra, Erando Seneviratne, Aravinda
Premaratne, Kanishka Ranaraja and Tharaka
Jayasinghe, to give of their best.
52nd Battle of the Babes
The third big mach of Kandy is between St.
Sylvester’s and Vidyartha, called the ‘Battle of the
Babes’, to be played on 19th and 20th. Out of the 51
games played St. Sylvester’s are leading in wins
with 12 to Vidyartha’s 4. The winners of this game
get the Rev. Fr Don George Trophy,
This year it is going to be an interesting game with
Sylvestrians expecting a lot from Waruna Wijesinghe,
Nuwan Nilantha, Faiz Ahamed and Danjaya Athuda.
Vidyartha is led by Tirantha Dissanayke, his
deputy is Kasun Wijekoon and last year’s skipper
Sameera Abeyrathne is also there to give his
experience together with Dinush Gunatilake, Ruwan
Bandara, Thilina Rupasena, Tharindu Ranaweera, S.A.
Athanayake, Indika Bandara, Dulaj Perera and
During these matches high spirits and healthy
rivalry will prevail as usual. According to DIG
Pujith Jayasundara, a top class cricketer of
Dharmaraja College, the Police will be there in
strength not to harass or intimidate but to see that
everything goes well and peace is maintained.
To the revellers a word of caution from the Police:
“In your ‘high spirits’ do not inconvenience or
provoke anyone. While you enjoy the cricket, may it
not cause difficulties to the others. Do not drive
about in packed, decrepit vehicles. Avoid road
demonstrations as far as possible and please - no
hat-collections whatsoever. If you break the law you
are liable to be arrested and locked up until the
match is over – then the match will be over for you.
“The police will have to do their duty. No
processions or parades will be permitted and avoid
walking in large groups on the perimeter of the
playing area. Please avoid invading the playing
field and obstructing the progress of the game.
The organsiers of the big matches, who also
played the game, wish everyone at the matches two
days of great cricket, wonderful entertainment and
maximum enjoyment in all three games. They also hope
all would be able to go home after a happy ending
and with great memories.