A record 84 teams to compete at Dialog Schools Rugby League 2024

Blockbuster tournament kicks off on June 14

29th May 2024       Colombo


A record 84 teams to compete at Dialog Schools Rugby League 2024

Photographed from L-R: Nirodha Wijerama – All-Tournament Secretary, SLSRFA, Manuja Nimmana – Secretary, SLSRFA, Kamal Ariyasinghe - President of the Sri Lanka Schools Rugby Football Association, Hon. (Dr) Susil Premajayantha – Minister of Education, Lasantha Theverapperuma – Group Chief Marketing Officer, Dialog Axiata PLC, Hon. Harin Fernando – Minister of Tourism and Lands and Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs, Harsha Samaranayake - Vice President, Brand and Media, Dialog Axiata PLC, Pubudu Aluthgedara – Senior General Manager/ Head of Business Media and Content, Dialog Axiata PLC, Prashan Costa – Senior Manager, Marketing Operations, Dialog Axiata PLC

In its commitment to nurturing budding sports talents and fostering future champions, Dialog Axiata PLC, Sri Lanka's premier connectivity provider, is once again fueling the Dialog Schools Rugby League 2024. A record 84 school teams will compete across three divisions, setting a new benchmark in the history of the Schools Rugby League. The increased number of schools is a result of Dialog’s continued efforts in supporting Schools Rugby over the past years, including initiatives such as development tournaments. The much-awaited season will kick off with the Division 1 Segment A clash on 14th June at Havelock Grounds.

As the principal sponsor, Dialog Axiata PLC has made arrangements to live broadcast the tournament on Dialog Television - ThePapare TV (channel number 63), ThePapare TV HD (channel number 126), Dialog ViU, and, catering to the interests of current and former students, parents, supporters, well-wishers, and the rugby-loving community in Sri Lanka.

The Division 1 Segment A Sixteen schools will vie for the Division 1 Segment A title in the Dialog Schools Rugby League 2024 and features defending champions St. Peter’s College, last year's runners-up Royal College, along with Isipathana College, St. Joseph's College, Trinity College, Wesley College, Vidyartha College, S. Thomas' College, Science College, St Anthony's College, Dharmaraja College, Kingswood College, D.S. Senanayake College, Zahira College, including Thurstan College, Colombo, and Sumangala College, Kandy, who were promoted from Division 1 Group B in the previous year's competition. An additional 26 schools will compete in Division 1 Segment B and C, while 42 schools will participate in Division 2 (12 teams) and Division 3 (30 teams) of the Dialog Schools Rugby League, aiming to secure top positions in their respective groups.

In the previous season of the Dialog Schools Rugby League, the blue-ribbon competition in Sri Lanka schools’ rugby calendar, St. Peter’s College emerged as champions, triumphing in both the Dialog Schools Rugby League and the Dialog Schools Rugby K/O tournament by defeating Isipathana in both finals. St. Peter’s College, Isipathana College, Royal College, Colombo, St. Anthony's College St. Joseph’s College, S. Thomas’ College, Mt. Lavinia, and Trinity College, Kandy are expected to be strong contenders in this year's tournament.

”This year’s league features the highest number of teams – 84, which is a significant achievement. The Dialog Schools Rugby League has shown remarkable growth over the years, and we extend our gratitude to our main sponsor Dialog Axiata for their support to SLSRFA, particularly in these challenging economic times" stated Kamal Ariyasinghe, President of the Sri Lanka Schools Rugby Football Association (SLSRFA). "We look forward to an exciting tournament with all 84 teams vying for victory in their respective divisions."

"In line with our steadfast commitment to powering the champions of tomorrow, we are pleased to partner with the Schools Rugby League, one of the most highly anticipated events in the school sports calendar," remarked Lasantha Theverapperuma, Group Chief Marketing Officer at Dialog Axiata PLC. "We extend our best wishes to SLSRFA and all the participating schoolboys for the 2024 season." Dialog Axiata PLC also made financial donations to over 70 schools, to enhance existing infrastructure facilities, and providing rugby kits.

“Engaging in extracurricular activities is crucial for developing children's personalities and promoting healthy habits. We must commend the Sri Lanka Rugby School Union and its officials for organizing this event, which helps develop a generation of healthy individuals. We must also recognise the continuous support from Dialog Axiata PLC who has been a pillar of strength for the School Rugby Union by sponsoring this event," said Minister of Education Dr. Susil Premajayantha.

"School rugby lays the foundation for national and international levels. Dialog Axiata PLC has been the main sponsor of the school rugby league since 2020, and their efforts in promoting the sport in the country are commendable. We must appreciate Dialog's commitment to developing rugby in Sri Lanka," added Sports Minister Harin Fernando.

Dialog Axiata is also a dedicated sponsor of the National Cricket, Volleyball, and Esports teams and the primary sponsor of the Sri Lanka Golf Open. The Company promotes diversity, equity and inclusion through sponsorships in Netball Federation of Sri Lanka and National Paralympic Committee to enable athletes to participate in national and international tournaments. Further, in line with its commitment towards empowering the champions of tomorrow, the company continues to power the President’s Gold Cup Volleyball, National Junior and Senior Netball tourneys, and School Rugby.