Confident Sri lanka ready for Singapore challenge

Published : 8:29 am  May 12, 2017 | No comments so far |  |  (757) reads | 

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By Pathum Sri Wijeratne in South Korea
Sri Lanka will face their moment of truth when they confront Singapore in the 10th Asian Youth Netball Championship semi-final encounter in Jeonju, South Korea today (12).


The first semi-final between Sri Lanka and Singapore will commence at 11.30 a.m (Sri Lanka time) while the second semi-final between Malaysia and Hong Kong will start at 1.30 p.m (Sri Lanka time).


In addition, the play-off matches to decide the lower ranking positions of the tournament between Thailand vs Chinese Taipei, India vs Maldives and Pakistan vs South Korea will also be worked off today. 


Malaysia will enter the semi-finals as the only unbeaten side in the tournament having won all four matches in the preliminary round while Sri Lanka, Singapore and Hong Kong have lost one game each.    

 
Sri Lanka of course had a poor start to their campaign as they suffered a shock 48-53 defeat at the hands of Thailand in the opening fixture of the tournament.


However, the reigning champions recovered magnificently and went on to record three back-to-back victories over Pakistan (93-6), Maldives (86-14) and Hong Kong (60-45) respectively. 


As a result, Sri Lanka were able to secure the top spot in Group ‘A’ with six points and having accumulated a total of 218 goals while conceding only 136 goals to their rivals. 


Sri Lanka will be banking heavily on their star player Kaveena Rajapaksa who has emerged as the most successful goal scorer of the tournament. 


In addition, Sachini Rodrigo and Nilum Hapuarachchi have also contributed a great deal towards the success of the Sri Lankan team. 
However, Sri Lanka will be forced to take the field without one of their key players, Hansima Dissanayake who is on the injured list. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka Skipper Nadee Fernando expressed her confidence of entering the final and also hope to play the important semi-final fixture with a different game plan.  Sri Lanka Coach Tamara Liyanage believed that Singapore will have a slight advantage with their height but said that her players are determined to win the game and to reach the final.        

      
Liyanage further noted that fitness will be key factor and the side that takes the lead during the first quarter will have the advantage.