History of Isipathana Rugby

Isipathana College Colombo formerly known as Greenlands College have niched itself a name as the most feared rugby playing team in the schools arena. They are tagged as the Kings of Schools Rugby which they have maintained since the school started playing the game in 1963. In fact they took to rugby in the year 1960 led by Randy Keller playing friendly games at under 17 level.

Rugby at Isipathana they say began with Randy Keller who was an ardent spectator at all the matches that his father played for Havelock SC. His enthuasism persisted some of the senior players to have a go with the result today the Isipathanians are masters at rugby. Their first senior team to come out was in the year in 1963 which was led by Bryan Ingram which was coached by the late Y.C. Chang and the first major game was against St Anthony's College Katugastota which they came out victorious defeating their opponents by 8-3. They sounded a warning to the teams which were playing rugby and since then they have never looked back and have maintained their supremacy and lived upto their name as the Kings of Schools Rugby. Though their first win was in 1963, it was only in 1965 that the school was officially affliated to the SLRFU's schools. Since that unforgettable day which has now reached the four decade mark the Isipathanians have won excatly 40 trophies upto the last Singer Sri Lanka 7s' tournament which concluded on September 7 2003. The trophies that they have won in the junior level are not included here. But the most wonderful part is that they have achieved all these without a ground of their own. According to statistics available only Royal and S. Thomas' Mt Lavinia are near them with 12 trophies a piece followed by Trinity with seven. The three schools mentioned have a long history of rugby behind them. Like winning the trophies they have won the Isipathanians have produced 60 national players for the past five decades. The first player to play for the national team was Randy Pietersz from there on the list goes on with many of them captaining the national team. An astonishing record for a school. Another special feature is that the school has won all the trophies which were on offer for the first time. They have anexxed the league title on 17 occasions. They won the first ever school's 7's tournament which was held in 1970 Since then they have won the 7's trophy which was played for the Philip Bultjens trophy ten times including four in a row. In 1992 they had the distinction of winning six of the seven trophies that were on offer which is a record in schools rugby. In 1997 they bagged the league championship, president's trophy, the sevens and the WP 10's and they repeated the feat in the year 1999. This is a feat that no other school has achieved upto date. They also won the triple crown on six occasions in 1985, 1986, 1992, 1997 and 1999 n 2014.

The team became popular year in and year out which paved the way for sponsorships from many individuals like Kishin Butani, Sarath de Costa, Rajasingham Industries and Shutter 2000. Suntel ,PC house ,Dialog ,Lumiere Ole Springs we are grateful to them not forgeting H.T. de Silva, Jayantha Fernando and his band of Old Peterites, Frankie David, Michael Loos, Y.C. Chang who nutured rugby at Isipatahana. Isipathana's achievement at rugby despite the many obstacles it has to face even at present with the lack of their own playground being the biggest has not deterred them from marching forward.

 

 

ICOIC would Like to Thank Mr . Hassan Nauzeer Sinhawansa for Information .

 

 

 

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