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REPORT: “Big Match Cricket Carnival” at King City on July 1 – Canada Day

Posted on 15 July 2014 by admin

 IMG_8450 Canada Day

July 1 is Canada’s birthday. The occasion marks the joining of the British North American colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Province of Canada into a federation of four provinces (the Province of Canada being divided, in the process, into Ontario and Quebec) on July 1, 1867. Canada became a kingdom in its own right on that date but the British parliament and Cabinet kept limited rights of political control over the new country that were shed by stages over the years until the last vestiges were surrendered in 1982, when the Constitution Act patriated the Canadian constitution.

In the midst of this historic day, the Sri Lankan community in Toronto stages its “Big Batch” extravaganza that attracts hundreds of cricket fans who enjoy a day’s cricket, food and revelry. This year was no exception and former Sri Lanka cricketer David Heyn was Chief Guest at the 30th Josephian-Peterite cricket encounter that was played at the picturesque King City Grounds on July 1 – Canada Day. The “Battle of the Saints” was given pride of place on centre ground due to its milestone 30th encounter. This game took place alongside the 26th Royal/Thomian “Battle of the Blues” encounter and 9th Trinity/Antonian “Battle of the Hills”. The colourful tents of the six schools mixed with the tents of the food vendors made the venue look impressive to the hundreds of spectators who thronged the imposing King City Grounds on Canada’s National Day.

The “Big Match Cricket Carnival” is the end result of the splendid work of the joint committee of six schools who worked through in a cohesive manner to organize this spectacular event with precision. The joint committee worked out the logistics of the common elements with care and ensured that all three venues were assigned in a manner that was agreed by all and special note must be made of the camaraderie that prevailed throughout the process from planning to execution. A special thanks to Old Thomian Rukshan Mendis who coordinated the joint committee comprising of Yoga Atheray (President, Royal College OBA – ROCOBA); Ananda Wickramasinghe (President, Trinity College OBA), Joy Perera (President, St. Anthony’s College Kandy OBA), Rajith Kannangara (President, S. Thomas’ College OBA) and Upali Obeyesekere (President, Josephian-Peterite Alumni Association). Old Josephian cricket legend Rajive Benedict was in charge of securing the Maple Leaf Cricket Grounds at King City that proved to be a fitting venue for the three “Big Match” sporting event.

Album of photographs captured at the event may be veiwed by downloading the link below. Photo credits to Aubrey Atton and Upali Obeyesekere.


The strong Antonian team met the daring Trinitians in their 9th encounter of the Canadian series. Joy Perera and Ananda Wickramasinghe, the two presidents of St. Anthony’s College OBA and Trinity College OBA respectively ensured that the best team was put forward by the two schools. N the main game, the Antonians captained by Paval Thurairajah beat the Trinitians by 142 runs to retain Rev. Fr. Aiden de Silva OSB trophy for the SEVENTH consecutive year. In the Masters game, Antonian skipper Jeysekar Jayaraman led his team to a thrilling 1-run win to keep the Masters Trophy for the third year in succession.

Main Game: St.Anthony’s College OBA – 222 for 5 wicket in 30 overs beat Trinity College OBA by 142 runs. Two Antonian players came in from USA for the game – Jeyasekar Jeyaraman (JJ) and Paul Nadarajah.

For the Antonians, former star batsman Damian Nadarajah top scored with 73 runs. It may be recalled that after leaving school, Nadarajah went on to captain Tamil Union in 1996/1997 in the Sara Trophy. Displaying his old batting form Nadarajah led the onslaught with skipper Paval Thurairajah 61 retired, Paul Kiruba Nadarajah 20, and Titus Paulraj 35 making useful contributions. Sudharshan, better known in rugby circles bowled best for Trinity with 2 for 58.  Trinity were bundled out for 80 runs with Malinga Wijesuriya bowling brilliantly with 5 for 10 and Chamil Rajapakse bagging 2 wickets for 7 runs.

The Masters Game between Trinity and St. Anthony’s ended in a thrilling 1-run win for the Antonians. Batting first the Antonians scored 114 runs for 6 wickets in the mandatory 20 overs with Kuga Pitchamuttu scoring a fiery 38 runs and Trevor Brown unbeaten with 19. Ananda Wickramasinghe (Trinity Lion in Athletics) bowled best for Trinity with 3 for 6. Trinity batting second fought valiantly but could score only 113 runs for 8 wickets in 20 overs falling short by 1-run to give the Antonians a double win in the 9th encounter. Roy, 33, and Ravi Ponnambalam, 12, were among the runs for Trinity. For the Antonians, Joy Perera bowled best with 3 for 25, and TK Pillai had 2 for 13.



The Royal/Thomian has reached its 26th year in the Canadian series. The cricketing fraternity salutes Rohan Jayasekara, former Royal cricketer who is the only double-international we have in the community. He played for Sri Lanka and then for Canada. For his contribution towards Canadian cricket, Jayasekara was inducted into the Canadian Hall of Cricket Fame earlier in the year by the Canada Cricket Association.

The Masters (“Stallions”) game precedes the Main game. The day began with the Royal-Thomian Stallions game with the Royal Stallions upon winning the toss elected to field. Sean De Saram and Gerhard Munaweera batted well for S. Thomas. The Royal Stallions started off their innings slowly but steadied the innings thereafter to claim a WIN.

The main game of 40 overs for the coveted Mustangs Trophy began next. The Thomians were led by Lakshan Liyanage and the Royalists were led by Eddie Jayawardene.

Thomians batting first were soon in trouble at 41 for the loss of 4 wickets but later recovered mainly through Shantha Jayasekara’s knock. At one point it looked as if STC would recover well to post a formidable score, however, after Jayasekara was run out for 85, Thomians consolidated to reach 211 in 38 overs. Rukshan Mendis, 41, helped boost the Thomian score. The last wicket pair of Trevor Fernando and Jehan Ahmad frustrated the Royalists. Eventually Jehan was caught and bowled by Dushy Mahesh in the 38th over. Left-arm pace bowler Asantha Fonseka captured 4 wickets for the Royalists.

Royalists chasing over 5 runs per over lost wickets at regular intervals. Thomian pace and spin combination kept Royal in check. With 108 for 8 in the 25th over, many expected Royalists to fold up quickly. However, they fought superbly through their 9th wicket pair of Rohan Jayasekara and Charitha to bring them closer to the target. Jayasekara got out in the 36th over and Royal fell short by 14 runs. Ayesh Seneviratne bowled superbly to take 3 important scalps for the Thomians.

STC – 211 all out in 38 overs

Shantha Jayasekara 85, Rukshan Mendis 41. Bowling: Asantha Fonseka 4 for 24

RC – 196 all out in 39 overs

Rohan Jayasekara 86, Charitha 35. Bowling: Ayesh Seneviratne 3 for 10, Rukshan Mendis 2 for 37, Art Wilson 2 for 50,




The Josephian-Peterite encounter prides itself of been the first Sri Lankan “Big Match” to be played in Canada in 1984. Having reached a milestone of 30 years the Josephian-Peterite Joint Alumni Association invited Dr. Adiel Anghie and David Heyn, two Peterite stars of yesteryear to be Guests of Honour. Adiel Anghie, captained the Peterite cricket team in 1961 and also had the privilege of captaining the college rugby team in 1959. David Heyn captained St. Peter’s College in 1964, and then played for Sri Lanka (Ceylon) from 1966 to 1976. Dr. Anghie lives in the U.S. while Heyn lives in London, England. The presence of these two fine sportsmen of yesteryear gave the 30th anniversary game an added dimension and it was good to see David Heyn and Dr. Adiel Anghie mingling with old friends amongst the Royal, Thomian, Trinity, Antonian camps.-

SCORES: Peterites won the Masters game by 23 runs. SPC – 131 for 8 wickets and SJC – 108 for 6 wickets.

The Masters game was marred by showers but the weather settled down allowing a 15-over game. Josephians led by Milan Gunawardana fielded a strong side with Ian Joseph, Rohan Vanigasooriyar, Dayan Tranchell, Melvyn Machado, Mario Steinwall, Jeevan Pragasam, Brian Baldsing, Duminda Perera in the side. The Peterites were led by Rehan Goonetilleke with Srinath Wijeyeratne, Michael Jayatilleke, Sean Corera, Yohan Wijeyewickrema, Chanaka de Mel, Niloo Wijegunawardena, Terrence Rajah turning out for the school by the canal. On paper the Josephians had a better side but skipper Goonetilleke led his team to an admirable win. Batting first the Peterites knocked up 131 runs for the loss of 8 wickets – quite an imposing score for 15 overs. Opener Chanaka de Mel, 31, Yohan Wijeyawickrema, 32, Sean Corera, 31, were in the runs for the Peterites. Dayan Tranchell, 2 for 20, and Rohan Vanigasooriyar, 2 for 26 were the pick of the Josephian bowlers. In reply, the Josephians fell short of the target and were 108 for 6 wickets at close. An unbeaten knock of 36 by Duminda Perera and Mario Steinwall, 29, top scored for the Joes while Srinath Wijeyeratne, 2 for 29 and Shawn Corera, 2 for 25 were the pick of the bowlers.


MAIN GAME – Josephians won the main game by 125 runs. SJC – 284 for 5 wickets; SPC – 159 All Out.

The Main Game included top players who represent Canada and play league cricket in Toronto. Canadian opener Ruvindu Gunasekara and Srimantha Wijeyeratne for the Peterites and Trevin Bastiampillai, Nigel Isaacs, and P. Ravishankar for the Josephians. Others of note are Dhanuka Pathirana, Ray Lord, Rajive Benedict all Joes who are well known in the cricket circles both in Sri Lanka and Canada.  Batting first the Josephians amassed 284 runs for the loss of 5 wickets. Trevin Bastiampillai, 57, Gavin Bastiampillai, 95, and Dhanuka Pathirana, 78 helped boost the Josephian score and provided entertaining cricket to the hundreds of spectators who had come to watch the 30th encounter. Ruvindu Gunasekara, 2 for 56 bowled best for the Peterites.

Facing an uphill battle the Peterites turned to Canadian opener Ruvindu Gunasekara who was unfortunately run out at 16. They lost wickets at regular intervals and eventually posted 159 runs all out. Only skipper Srimantha Wijeyeratne, 60, stood up to the strong Josephian bowling but after he was ruled LBW for a well earned half-century. The Josephians pretty well had the match in the bag with Gunasekara and Wijeyeratne back in the pavilion. Trevin Bastiampillai turned in a good all-round performance by taking 3 wickets for 32 runs. A very high standard of cricket was witnessed and Chief Guest David Heyn commented on this aspect of the game relative to the Joe-Pete game played in England.

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