CHAMATH LEADS SRI LANKA TO CONVINCING VICTORY OVER QATAR
Tabriz, Iran, July 2, 2018 – Chamath Weerappuliga’s 15 points including eleven blocks in a comfortable 25-10 25-23 25-13 encounter against Qatar helped Sri Lanka maintain their invincible run at the 12th Asian Men’s U18 Volleyball Championship at Poursharifi Gymnasium on Monday.
Having beaten Hong Kong and Australia in the previous two matches, Sri Lanka are riding on crest of confidence wave in this match against Qatar. The Sri Lankans reached an early win 25-10 in the opening set that took only 18 minutes. Qatar came within a whisker of winning the second set, but just let the opportunity slip through their fingers. Sri Lanka came back stronger at the final assault to win the closely-contested set 25-23. The third set turned out to be a lop-sided affair which ended 25-13 in favour of the Sri Lankans.
In fact, all the players of Sri Lanka grew into the match the longer they played out, with Dheyan Rajapaksha (7 points) playing a big part in the victory. There were plenty of errors but also plenty for coach Kumara Sisira to work with going forward.
“My players had so many trainings in their schools with tough matches. I found the new format of tournament fair. If we win all the matches, we can join the top four and this is fair. I am a bit unfamiliar to this system but the Malaysian statistician helped me to understand it. Our next match will be against Iran. I know it would be hard. Playing in Iran is always difficult. This is my sixth times in Iran. I was here with the senior team of Sri Lanka in Asian Championship but my first time with the youth team. I know how the crowd can distract us. Even East Asian teams like Japan and Korea similarly have problems playing Iran as the supporters here strongly cheer the host side,” Sri Lanka head coach Kumara Sisira said.
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