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Northern Province go out favourites against Southern

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Ceylon Provincial Tournament Final
Southern Province team

Northern Province team

The Northern team will be much focused and pretty determined to go all out to clinch the inaugural Ceylon Provincial Tournament and to dedicate it to their late teammate Duckson Puslas when they meet Southern Province in the final for the Independence Trophy soccer encounter at Duraiyappah Stadium in Jaffna today, where the kick-off is scheduled for 3.30 p.m.

After a close 1-0 win in the first leg of the semi-finals, the Northern team did well to hold the Eastern team, which enabled them to play in this final. They as a team are to fire in all their cylinders to win this game in their own den and to reward it to their later hero who died under tragic circumstances. They won three and drew four games before they reached the semis and qualified for the finals on a higher goal aggregate.

Led by Mariydas Nitharsan one of the prolific strikers in the game and the highest individual goal scorer for them will lead them from the front. As per their head coach Mohamed Jusmin the squad is injury-free and very pumped up to go all out to win this game to dedicate to their late teammate. They have the added advantage of playing in front of their home crowd are tipped to be the favourites of winning this game. They possess a well-balanced side with a blend of youth and experience in their ranks.

Southern captain Rasik Rishad (on left) and Northern captain Mariydas Nitharsan

“We are very worried over our colleague’s demise as a team. He was a tower of strength for the team. However, now it is our duty to go all out to win this game on behalf of him.”

“We are injury-free and have drawn few strategies to overcome our rival. Playing at home is anyway an added advantage for us. We as a unit are pretty confident of clinching the title today.” Said Jusmin.

On the other hand, the team Southern will be a worried lot as they will be sans one of their key players Tharindu Dhanushka who was sent off the field with a red card for dangerous play. But they are very determined to pull this game their way with their spirited performance.

They too are fortunate enough to be hereafter reeling last at the end of the third stage league match. The man behind their rejuvenation was their head coach Shirantha Kumara who played a pivotal role. Shirantha a down to earth person is a great reader of the game.

He had done lots of analysis on the other team’s performance, especially the players.

He says that it was the self-confidence of the players who believed in them that they were capable of turning tables, which ultimately proved dividend towards our march here.

Nevertheless, are fully geared up and Shirantha assured their supporters and critics to keep their fingers crossed and don’t leave hopes that they will win this big game.

“We started as underdogs at the outset of the tournament. We did a lot of hard work after the first three games analyzing

the other teams, especially how the other team coaches adapt their strategies, handling players, who are their playmakers and top scorers.

This was the secret behind our success in the last two matches. But this game is going to be another key fixture. We have nothing to lose and will go flat

out to win this big game to clinch the Trophy and to get into the history of this inaugural tournament.” concluded Shirantha.

The winners will carry away the Independence Trophy along with a cash reward of 50,000 rupees per player and medals while the runner-up team players will receive 25,000 rupees each and medals. Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa will grace the occasion as chief guest accompanied by Football Sri Lanka, President, Jaswar Umar, and his officials.

Saturday, March 5, 2022 – 01:00

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