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17 May 2012 Written by 

CARLTON SUPER 7’S SRI LANKA 2012

THE TEAMS

Eastern Eagles

The Eastern Eagles team consists of the following local players who have excelled in the domestic rugby league Samantha Lakshan, Thisitha Samarathilaka, Niroshan Fernando, Chamara Vithanage, Amjad Buksh, Sadun Herath, Anuradha Wilwara and the highest sponsored player Sudarshan Muthuthanthri who was sponsored for a daily allowance of Rs. 76,000.

While Tom Iosefo from New Zealand, Chris Brightwell, Sam Edgerly  and England’s try scoring machine Simon Hunt will represent the Eastern Eagles as their overseas players. Simon Hunt is one of the leading try scorers for the English sevens team as he has scored 37 tries in 15 IRB seven’s tournaments.

Coached by : Russel Earnshaw (England).

Simon Hunt

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Jaffna Challengers

The Jaffna Challengers team will be captained by Yoshitha Rajapaksa for the second concecutive year and consist of a young and talented team for the 2012 version. The team consists of Yoshitha Rajapaksa (Captain), Eranda Weerakkody, Niranjan Wickramarathne, Rehan Weerakoon, Thilina Weerasinghe, Dulip Methruwan, Tuan Shamrock and Merks Silva. The Jaffna Challengers team poses an all Fijian foreign player brigade which is led by the Fijian Captain Seteffano Cakaunivalu and deputisided bythe Fijian flyer Osea Kolinisau and the little master of current Fiji Rugby Emosi Vucago. The highest sponsored player of the Challengers is Niranjan Wickramarathne.

Coached by : Mike Friday (England).

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Jaffna Challengers

Central Kings

The champions of 2011 the Central Kings produced the best rugby of the tournament in the 2011 version as they were almost unstoppable. The Central Kings will be undoubtedly looking for a second consecutive Carlton Super Seven’s championship at the 2012 Carlton Super Seven’s tournament. The Kings team for the2012 version is blended with both youth and experience and would definitely be a force to reckon come this may. The team consists of the following local players led by a Sri Lankan Rugby sensation Mohamed Sheriff while Chula Susantha, Niroshan Karunanayake, Pubudu Kodagoda, Rajitha Samsoni, Nigel Ratwatte, Malitha Jayaruwan and Dilshan Kelaniyagoda binds the team.

Zar Lawrence a New Zealand seven’s legend who was a revelation playing for the Kings in the 2011 version has been recalled to represent the Kings after his sterling service to the franchise in the previous version. The Central Kings could also boast of having the fastest seven’s player in the world as Dan Norton is also a part of the foreign brigade of the Kings  and the team also has the luxury of having the English play maker Matt Turner who would combine well with his fellow countrymen and teammate Norton to form a formidable combination which could create no ends of trouble to the oppositions. Zackery Test the captain of the U.S seven’s team will also be providing his services the Central Kings. The highest sponsored player of the Kings is Pudubu Kodagoda.

Coached by: Geoff Allen (New Zealand).

Zar Lawrence

Dan Norton

Matt Turner

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North Western Blacks

The North Western Blacks had a fairly silent outing in the 2011 version where the performances were not met with the potential the team offered. However the team for the 2012 version will be looking forward to changing that stat as the team would be led by Chanaka Chandimal a great seven’s player in the Sri Lankan domestic circuit. Dilip Selman a veteran of Sri Lankan Rugby would be able to provide experience to the side while Pradeep Kulakulasuriya, Prasad Devinda, Rishan Premagetth, Pium Jayasinghe, Sayuru Anthony would be able to provide the thrust and pace required. The Blacks also has the luxury of having Radika Hettiarachchi a Sri Lankan Rugby legend whether be it the longer version or the shorter version. His experience would also play a vital role in taking the Blacks forward.

New Zealand’s Shane Christy, Warwick Lahmert will be a part of the North Western Blacks team. While two of the up and coming sensations of New Zealand seven’s rugby Frank Halai a try scoring machine along with the sleekly skills of Joe Webber would be of utmost benefit to the North western Balcks. The highest sponsored player of the Blacks is Dilip Selvam.

Coached by : Willie Rickards (New Zealand).

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Northern Gladiator

The Northern Gladiators also had a silent first outing at the Carlton Super Seven’s 2011. Where they were below par most of the tournament. The gladiators will be looking forward to changing that this year as they will be fielding a strong team full with youth exuberance. The gladiators will be led by Dinesh Kumara who is a well experienced campaigner when it comes to sevens rugby and he has the liberty of using the services of Gayan Rathnage, Lakala Perera, Shane Dissanayake, Indika Udayakumar, Mithun Hapugodage, Mohamed Rizwan and Pathum Chathuranga. Gayan Rathnage was selected as the highest sponsored player.

The Gladiators foreign brigade consists of South African players and a New Zeaalander. Players namely M.J Mentz, Ranfred Dasal, Deon Helberg while Slaimankhel Sabir is the only New Zealander in the side.

Coached by : Niel Powell (South Africa).

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North Central Typhoons

The North Central Typhoons has a fairly forgettable 2011 version as they were at the bottom of the table in both Kandy and Colombo legs. However they would definitely be seeking redemption this time around as they have chosen a fairly stronger side compared to the last years tournament. Sajith Suhaid, Chamara Dabare, Suranga Pushpakumara, Ruchira Rathnage, Gayan Rathnayake, Mushin Faleel, Woshan Mahawatte and Ashan Gallage are the local players who will be representation the Typhoons. Mushin Faleel was awarded the highest sponsorship for the Typhoons.

Shalom Suniula from the United States, metuisela Talebula and the high flying Joeli Lutomailagi represent the Typhoons as the overseas players of the franchise.

Coached By : Clarke Laidlaw ( New Zealand sevens Asst Coach).

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Western Warriors

The Western Warriors were not able to perform upto expectations in the 2011 version as they were undone on many occasions during the final period of the games. The Warriors have undergone a complete change were they have opted for a new side with new leaders.  Dilan Soysa, Wishwamithra Jayasinghe, Shenal Dias, Sasanka Ariyarathne, Rajitha Abeykoon, Kanchana Ramanayake, Madushan Iddamalgoda  and Jeevan Amaradasa provide the local horse power while Lote Raikabula the New Zealand seven’s star along with Rupeni Levase from Samoa and waisake Naholo from New Zealand provide the overseas power to the Warriors. The Highest Sponsored player of the Warriors was Shenal dias the former Peterite and current Air Force player.

Coached by:  Blair Mills ( New Zealand)

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Southern Sharks

The Southern Sharks were consistent during both legs of the 2011 version as they emerged as the runner up of the series only to be bettered by the Central Kings. The two New Zealand players Nalu Tuigamala and Edwin Cocker played a major role making the Southern Sharks the number two team as they were immensely influential in everything the Sharks did. The Sharks local players consist of the following Diusha Chathuranga, Srinath Sooriyabandara, Dushan Lewke, Shanaka Kumara, Mekalanka Promodha, Shabir Mohamed, Kosala Thisera and Ashen Karthelis . Ashen Karthelis was also awarded as the highest sponsored player for the Sharks.

The Sharks have opted for the services of Nalu Tuigamala and Edwin Cocker for the 2012 version as well while Malakai Fekitoa has been named as the newest addition to the overseas player list. All the players hail from New Zealand.

Coached By : Chris Roche ( Australian).

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Uva Vipers

The Uva Vipers team came short in the first version of Carlton Super seven’s even with the service of one of the greats of sevens rugby Amasio Valence.  He was inspirational in everything the Vipers did even though they fell short on the leader board. The Vipers have also opted for a side full of young guns. Riza Mubarak, Lasintha De Costa, Mohomed Shasan, Duminda Nayakarathne, Ashane De Costa, Lee Keegal, Ranjana Senevirathne and Chilanka Sudakara represent the Vipers as the local players. Ashane De Costa was the highest sponsored player.

The Vipers are blessed with obtaining services from the most influential seven’s players in the world. The Vipers will be led by D.J Forbes the New Zealand seven’s skipper who has achieved all in the seve’s version. D.J. has Captained New Zealand to the 2010 Commonwealth Games Gold Medal and in 2008 he was crowned IRB International Sevens Player of the year followed by the New Zealand Samoan Sports Association Sportsperson in 2009.  In 2012, D.J. has won 2 World Series Titles, one in Port Elizabeth, South Africa and the other in Wellington, New Zealand.  D.J. will play his 50th IRB sevens World Series tournament in Scotland in May.

D.J Forbes and the Vipers are also able to use the master mind and master skills of the 2012 IRB sevens players of the year Toamsi Cama.

Tomasi is currently the leading points scorer in the 2011/12 circuit with 281 points which is a massive 90 points ahead of his closest rival Colin Gregor of Scotland (191).  He is also 4th in this seasons try scoring stakes with 25, five short of leading try scorer Dan Norton of England (33).

After finishing 3rd in the last World Series competition in Tokyo, Tomasi will be looking forward to display his play-making ability and match-winning skils in the final two tournaments to help New Zealand win the HSBC Sevens World Series.  Having played in over 40 tournaments there are only a few players in the New Zealand squad, or any team for that matter that travelled to every tournament in the World Series last year.  This provides Tomasi an invaluable experience to pass down to all the players in his Carlton 7’s Franchise the Uva Vipers, especially the young Sri Lankans that are still learning the ropes at Sevens Level.

They are have the services of the ever present and ever alert Tim Mikkleson who is regarded as the most consistent performer in the New Zealand Seven’s team.

Coached by : Peter Woods ( New Zealand).

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Sabaragamuwa Stallions

The Sabaragamuwa Stallions performed well during the first edition of Carlton Super Sevens as they consisted of a young side full of young. The stallions have brought the youthfulness forward this year as well as they have picked a young and energetic team. Saliya Handapangoda will be leading the side as last year. While Sajith Saranga one of the stars in the Sri Lankan Rugby arena, Charith Senevirathne, Andrew Benson, Udaya Hettiarachchi, Gayan Udara Liyanage, Heshan Gunarathne and Dinesh Liyanage would provide the support needed for their skipper as local players.

While the new kid on the block in New Zealand Sevens sensational Mark Jackman  and Byrce Heem another regular in the New Zealand seven’s  team will combine with two other New Zealanders Jack Wilson and Jonathan Malo to form the International alliance of the Stallions. Mark Jackman burst into the seven’s circuit in 2012 as a replacement for Tody Arnold and has been a revelation ever since

Coached by : Charles Baxter ( New Zealand).



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