Trinity College, Kandy, commenced this season with firm resolve to win the schools’ rugby league as well as to defend the Bradby Shield. Fueling this determination and providing the players with the necessary funding for training, nutrition, fitness and equipment for the second consecutive year is Zesta, Watawala Marketing’s flagship premium Pure Ceylon Tea brand. While the First Fifteen team will carry the branding and insignia of Zesta, all age-groups at Trinity College benefit from Zesta’s sponsorship.
Speaking about the continuation of this partnership with Trinity College rugby, Vish Govindasamy, Managing Director of Watawala Marketing said, “Watawala is a Tea company, and there is a strong and seamless connection between Planters and Trinity. Therefore, it was only natural that when the school came to us with a three year comprehensive development plan for Trinity Rugby, we agreed to partner them through our flagship brand Zesta. Zesta believes in the “relentless pursuit of quality” and we wish Trinity the same with their Rugby Programme and their pursuit of quality.”
Stating that Zesta has helped the school with this generous sponsorship, Brig W G K Aryaratne, Principal of Trinity College said, “I hope that with this support from Zesta our rugby players will be able to become the league champions.
We also hope to produce ten to 12 school players for national level rugby.
Rugby Scrummage, an organisation of old Trinitians who have played the game at the highest level, has meticulously formulated a three-year plan for the improvement of rugby at Trinity College. Rohan Abayakoon, Head of Rugby Strategy, Rugby Scrummage, stated, “with the sponsorship of Zesta, we have now implemented a comprehensive strategy for the development of the game in the school, which targets six and seven year-olds right through to the First Fifteen.”
Neil Foote, Rugby Consultant for Trinity College, and Nilufer Ibrahim, Coach of the First Fifteen team, consider the players as a professional sports team and they believe that this would not be possible if not for the support of Zesta. Commenting on the team’s performance, they said “In the past, they would play well at the Bradby Shield but not consistently. We’re trying to change their mindset because historically, the only game that’s ever been important to Trinity has been the Bradby Shield. Over time they haven’t had much success over league championships. We’re trying to make them feel that every game is important.”
The players too have responded magnificently to the programme. There is a huge difference in their approach to the game compared to preceding years. “With the help of our coaches, our techniques have improved immensely,” said Kaneel Seneviratne, Captain of the First Fifteen team. “During the season we made some mistakes but have played well. We have learned from those mistakes and hope to be unbeaten this year.”