Believe in yourself

Believe in yourself. You are braver than you think, more talented than you know, and capable of more than you imagine. Roy T. Bennet

Believing in one's self is hard especially when people around you don't believe in you. Usually, we tend to give up but that's not the case for the ICBS cricket team. Let's review their journey that started with many obstacles and setbacks and ended with becoming the champions of the game together with the help and support from everyone at home and college.       

Red Bull Campus Cricket is a world-renowned international college cricket tournament. It offers a stand for emerging cricketers to play on a world stage and take their initial steps towards professional cricket. This tournament first started in 2012 and was held every year except in the year 2020 due to the unprecedented situation with regard to the COVID-19 pandemic. Teams from universities around the country compete in national tournaments and the winners are given the chance to represent their country and compete in the Red Bull Campus Cricket World Finals.

This year during the month of March, Red Bull held the 9th edition of the Red Bull Campus Cricket with the participation of 12 college-level teams namely Imperial College of Business Studies, Central Campus Colombo, Kotelawala Defence University (KDU), ESOFT, Royal Institute of Colombo, Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology, Sri Lanka Technological Campus, ACBT campus, ICBT Campus, Sri Lanka Institute of Management, SAEGIS and ICON Business School.

Before we move into the details of the matches, we should get to know the talented cricketers of team ICBS, first we have our captain Malshan Rodrigo, the wicket keeper Nipun Haggala, Chalitha Subasingha, Ayesh Dadayakkara who was also the highest wicket taker and the triumph of the team, Kavishka Senadheera who was the 3rd highest wicket taker, Pawantha Weerasinghe, Revan Kelly another valuable player, Sajitha De Silva the 3rd highest scorer, Tharindu Roshan the 4th highest scorer, Rusira Dineth, Janidu Himsara, Shamord Perera, Thiwanka Lakruwan, Pasindu adhithya, Sachintha Ravindu and Nipun Perera.

It all started during the first week of February when the ICBS cricket team got together to have their first practice after getting a slot to play in the red bull cricket tournament. The struggle to get everything in place was real and knowing this was the first time playing against other teams with professional and experienced players was pressurizing but our team was confident and they believed in each other especially with the support and love of Miss. Chanusha Jayawardhana who managed the team. She was the person who helped the team bond by taking the team out for lunch after matches, giving them a proper pep talk and allowing the team to discuss and understands each other strengths and mistakes. Another pilar of strength throughout this journey was the team’s coach Mr. Kavindu Perera who guided and supported them. Well, he wasn’t just a coach he was a friend to all of them, he knew each and every player very well and didn’t have to think twice on who to send next to play. I must say they weren’t just a team they were a family, a part of the ICBS family.

Before the first match all the players went through PCR examinations according to COVID 19 regulations. On march 11th Imperial college had their first match with ACBT Campus at Thurstan college grounds. The team was on to a decent start by winning the toss and opting to bat. Team Imperial did a good job throughout the entire match. It started raining during the last over and DLS method was used and Team Imperial won by exactly 1 run. The man of the match was given to Revan Kelly. This was the first win for the team and also a triumphant and a very pleasing moment.

On the next day, 12th march Imperial college played the quarter final match against the KDU team which was also held in Thurstan college grounds. It was a tough game to say the least. The target to win was 93 runs, the team lost 8 wickets chasing the target but it was definitely worth it as Team Imperial won the match by 2 wickets and the man of the match was awarded to Ayesh Dadayakkara.

The next match was the semi-finals which was held at BRC grounds situated in Colombo. Imperial college had to play against ESOFT Campus. At this point the imperial college team was confident even through the pressure. The match went well and smoothly as the target to win was 140 runs and the team achieved this in 5 wickets and 14.5 overs, and the man of the match was given to Pawantha Weerasinghe. This win was not only a tremendous victory for the team but everyone watching from home and rooting for the team to win. In other words, it was a win for the ICBS family.

The semi-final stats. Source: Thepapare

On the 14th of march was the big day that everyone was thoroughly anticipating. The finals took place at the BRC grounds between Imperial College and Central Campus Colombo (CCC). The target was to gain 136 runs in order to win but the start of the game was rocky as Imperial college lost 6 wickets for just 33 runs at halfway mark of the innings, and the majority was sure CCC was on its way to the win but as I said before the ICBS team never gave up. After the 7th wicket coach Kavindu sent in Thiwanka Lakruwan a talented bowler as number 8 and advised him to get as many sixers as possible and just as coach told him Thiwanka obtained 5 sixers This is the moment the team got back on track, by stunning the audience as well. At the end of the 15th over imperial college were at 99 for 7. The rest of the game was definitely nail biting as both teams were on fire trying to secured the trophy. The final over Imperial college needed to obtain 5 runs with only one wicket at hand. The last two balls were by Chamindu Wijesinghe from CCC which was for two boundary hits by Ayesh Dadayakkara that sealed the deal for the ICBS team.

The finals stats. Source: Thepapare

The day of the finals was a nerve wrecking experience as the so-called ‘underdogs’ Team Imperial turned the match around through blood, sweat and literal tears to become the champions of the RBCC tournament. This was undeniably one of the happiest days for the ICBS family, the emotions and feeling cannot be expressed in words. As the local tournaments meet the end, with profusion of emerging flair, the triumphant Imperial College team will represent Sri Lanka on the international stand at the RBCC World Finals which will be hosted in Oman later this year.

We have finally arrived to the end of the article but I can assure you this is certainly not the end for team Imperial but only just the beginning of the journey. We praise the sportsmanship shown by the team by never giving up and always having a team spirit by believing in each other. We wish the tremendously talented ICBS team from the depths of our hearts for this victory and wish all the best for all future endeavours.

Written By
Miss Ineshka Fernando
Undergraduate – University of the West of Scotland
Imperial College of Business Studies


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