Moratuwa Rowing Create History in Beira Lake

University of Moratuwa Rowers create history in Beira Lake by defeating University of Colombo in an emphatic fashion. UOM’s men whitewashed UOC 42-00 in an easily won title. Like that wasn’t enough to mark the day as the most important day in Mora Rowing crew’s history, Mora Ladies also won the title for the first time in the recent memory.

University of Moratuwa and University of Colombo went head to head in the biggest showdown of the University Rowing calendar Inter University Regatta. The last season UOM triumphed UOC by 40-02 in a most emphatic way. This time around UOM were looking forward for the perfect score of 42-00. However UOC needed this victory more after that embarrassing loss in the last season so they had a score to settle with UOM.

Both the rowing crews were eagerly waiting for months to make history this season. However both the teams were made to wait for 2 more hours as the water plants covered the rowing arena (Beira Lake) and made it impossible to row. Navy boats and Colombo Rowing Club boats tirelessly worked hard to clear the arena. Thanks to their hard work Lake was cleared and was made available for Oarsmen/women.

 

Men

Proceedings were started for the day with men’s B pair race. Both the teams wanted to start the regatta with a victory. But it was UOM which prevailed at the end of the race. UOM pair of Thilina Thotahewa (UOM captain) and Malith Madushan easily got the better of UOC’s pair. They finished the race 17 seconds before their UOC counterparts. This victory set the tone for the rest of the evening.

If the B pair victory was emphatic then the men’s A pair victory was beyond emphatic. UOM’s A pair Charuka and Dinesh finished the race with 35 seconds in hand. After winning both the pair races UOM continued their dominance in Scull races too. UOM’s B scull oarsman Sameera brought the glory to UOM by winning the race. B Scull was the only race UOM lost in the last season. UOM A Scull oarsman Joy Nitharshan won the race and took his revenge to his last season’s defeat to his UOC counterpart Shehan Dayaratne.

Moratuwa retained the title the moment they won A Scull, making both races A Fours and B fours a mere formality. UOM and UOC both went into these dead rubber races with less or no pressure. However that didn’t stop Moratuwa from being clinical. Moratuwa’s B fours also easily went past Colombo’s oarsmen. The fate didn’t help Colombo in the A Fours as well. Moratuwa finished ahead of Colombo in that race too. Moratuwa supporters who came to Beira Lake in numbers started their celebration after this complete route over Colombo.

Only Men’s races which Colombo won today were C Four and Graduate Four. However both of them are mere exhibition matches and carry 0 points in the final calculation.

When our Moraspirit team talked with the winning captain Thilina Thottahewa,

“I’m thoroughly excited and overjoyed by this victory. We missed the whitewash by 2 points last season, and we wanted to rectify it today. And thanks to my crew we did it.

I wanted to thank our coaches Mahil and Chamal on this proud moment. And special thanks should go to Ajith sir, Lakshman Sir and Rathnamuthali Sir. Most importantly I wanted to thank our Old Moratuwa Oarsmen/women. ”

 

Women

As it was mentioned before UOM completed their first ever Women’s Rowing victory in the near history this season. Before this season UOC used to win the races against Moratuwa ladies every season with ease. But UOM women’s crew had different ideas this season.

Women crew started the proceeding s with B scull race. Where UOC Sculler Gayasha Liyanage got to the end with relative ease and put the first points in the table for UOC. UOM immediately came with their comeback in the A Scull race with Shauri (UOM captain) winning it. It was the best race of the evening. At first Shauri lagged behind her UOC counterpart as she went in the wrong direction at first. But she changed her direction at the mid way and continued her race. She overtook the UOC sculler at the last stroke of the race and won 6 points for UOM.

In the pair races UOC won the B pair and UOM won the A pair race. UOC’s B pair Indu and Mariyan won the B pair race. UOM’s B pair also gave a run for their life in that race. UOM’s a pair Shauri and Ashanthi won the race for UOM. After that victory UOM needed only one victory in the remaining 2 Four races.

As UOC’s B Four Madhavi, Nilangka, Gayasha and Mariyan won the race for them, A Four race became the race “Win it and take it all grand Finale” for Women crew. As tension mounted both the universities tried to win that final race and the title.

But it was UOM which prevailed in that all important finale A Fours race. Colombo ladies gave some tough fight throughout the tournament, only to fall short.

Our Moraspirit team talked with the winning team captain Shauri Hettiarachi,

“Awesome, Awesome, Really proud of my crew and the way they went ahead with their business. We narrowly missed the victory last season too. So we really wanted to get those 2 points we missed last season.”
When asked about her comeback from behind A Scull victory

“This is not the first time I’ve won this A scull, I always knew I could win that race (Laughs) “

 

Would it be a new era of Rowing stronghold for Moratuwa? Only time could answer. But they are most definitely in the right way. Expect Moratuwa’s crew to party and celebrate all night. They thoroughly deserve it and have earned it.  

Moraspirit wishes Moratuwa Congratulations on this victory.

 

By Sutharman Paskaran

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