J'pura Clinch Gamunu Rathnayake Memorial Trophy
Written by Editor    Wednesday, 22 June 2011 17:33    PDF Print Email
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altAfter a see-saw battle where both teams showed immense talent and skill, University of Sri Jayawardanapura outplayed University of Moratuwa in the finals to emerge champions of the Gamunu Rathnayake memorial trophy invitational volleyball tournament. The tournament was organized by the volleyball team of the University of Moratuwa for the fourth consecutive year. This is the only volleyball tournament played at the university level aside from the annual inter-university games. The tournament also gives an opportunity to some of the teams to play under indoor conditions since very few other teams have indoor volleyball facilities.

The finals was thrilling encounter and showed real mastery of all aspects of the game - serves, passes, sets, attacks, blocks and digs. In the 5-set-best of five game, it was Japura who struck gold early and were leading from the get go to take the first two sets by an identical score line of 25/22. A determined University of Moratuwa team came back strong to take the third set 25/23. Yet Japura was able to hold their nerve under pressure to hold off the rally by the home team to take the fourth set 25/16 to win both the game, and the tournament.

Earlier in the group stage University of Moratuwa was undefeated after comprehensive straight set victories in both games played. Mora sat comfortably at the top of the table after defeating University of Kelaniya 28/26, 25/15 and eventual champions University of Sri Jayawardanapura 30/28, 25/19. In the game that decided the other finalist University of Jayawardenapura edged out University of Kelaniya 2 sets to 1 in a hard fought encounter. The scores read 25/21, 20/25, 25/21. All group stage matches were 3-set games.

In the women’s category University of Moratuwa sized up with University of Sri Jayawardanapura for a practice match. Mora was held down to scores of 9 and 16 by the Japura defense to take the game in straight sets.

The tournament is named after Gamunu Rathnayaka, who was a student of the Department of Electrical Engineering of the University of Moratuwa. He started his volleyball carrer at Royal College, Colombo 7 and represented the university volleyball team 2004-2007.He was the captain of the team on year 2007. The devastating Katubedda bomb blast in 2008 brought a tragic, untimely demise to this University of Moratuwa volleyball great. The tournament was initiated as a memorial event of the veteran as well as a practice tournament ahead of the annual inter university tournament.

-By Faheem Jalaldeen

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 23 June 2011 17:56 )