Havelock’s Sports Club has appointed Senal Deelaka as their skipper, while Sanath Martiz will continue as head coach for the upcoming 2020/21 rugby season scheduled to commence from end October.
A former product of Isipathana, Deelaka has a sound track record. This is his seventh year as a player and will occupy his favourite position as flanker for the Park Club.
He represented the college first XV team from 2010 to 2014 and guided them to clinch the triple crown as captain in 2014. An indefatigable player, he was also a member of the junior National side as vice-captain, which ended as runner-up in 2014 at the Asian Junior Rugby Championship held in Colombo, where Hong Kong, Chinese Taipei, South Korea and Sri Lanka participated.
Senal was the also the deputy skipper when Havelocks lost that nerve tingling league decider played in the 2018/19 season, which they lost to Kandy SC at home by a mere two-point margin, but later went onto win the knock out championship the same season.
The other good news for Havelocks is that two senior players, Dinuk Amaresinghe and Sumudu Rankotge, have rejoined them this season. Dinuk crossed over to CR and FC in the 2019/20 season, while Rankotge played for CR and Kandy Sports Club before rejoining them.
Over 30 players, including a few new faces, are contracted by Havelocks for this season, where only Shawkat Lahir has crossed over to Kandy SC.
Umesh Madushan the former Royal College, Colombo player will be Senal’s deputy, while former Thomian Sammy Akbar is their Rugby Chairman while former Peterite Roshan Opatha is the Rugby Secretary.
“We are happy to retain last year’s squad – except Shawkat – and are delighted to get back the services of two senior players Dinuk Amarasinghe and Sumudu Rankotge. Overall the squad is well-balanced with some talented players. We are pretty confident with Martis’ support we could achieve our goals,’ said Roshan Opatha.