Looking back over the history men of Dundee High rugby, often helps us look forward. But with the past comes so many questions that cannot be answered by names on a list.
Much of this is now left to folklore;
Who set the bench marks?
Who was the runner up in the fleece race in 2010?
What is the fleece?
How did the most improved player in 2009 train to achieve that accolade ?
This got our curiosity flowing, can we track down the history men and what are they doing now? Our search led us to Sri Lanka.
When you think about Sri Lankan sport, the obvious springs to mind, Cricket. But, for many in Dundee Rugby this was changed around 2006, when a fresh faced lad arrived at the University of Dundee to study International business.
A product of the D.S Senanayaka College, and with an International pedigree being selected for the Sri Lanka u19 squad, our very own Malinda Padmasiri embarked on his Scottish Rugby experience with DURFC.
Mally enjoyed the different cultural aspects of rugby in the UK and after making friends with some questionable characters, Disco, Saffa, Jenky , Mo Man & Andy Barr he made his way to Mayfield.
When asked who the biggest influence on his improvement where he came up with a rouges gallery of Dundee Stalwarts. The men credited with his meteoric rise where CoCo, Passion & most surprising of all Robin “Serge Blanco” Lunn.
He also sites his biggest influence on the pitch and the best player he’s played with as one of the two towers, Mark “Jenky” Jenkinson.
Malinda went from a player with a frame like an elephant and a running style like “Rab the Crab” (a later winner of this award), to a set piece specialist and a reliable first name on the team sheet for the Titans.
After winning the most improved player in 2009, Malinda’s finished his degree and moved back to the mother land, to take up a role as Tea export and marketing manager.
Combining a stressful job role with playing rugby has proved difficult for the Colombo Colossus, however he has enjoyed some rugby with the Ceylonese Rugby & Football Club (http://www.crandfc.lk/) playing his last game against the Air Force in 2013.
Malinda hasn’t hung up the cleats completely and hasn’t ruled out visiting the UK again, so who knows he may pull on the famous red and blue strip again!? However, was he is keen to see a Dundee Touring side in Sri Lanka.
Rumour has it that the playing committee are seriously looking into the first tour abroad for Dundee High Rugby since the famous New Zealand tour in 1992, with Big G keen on all things South Asian, heading up the itinerary?
We asked Mally, if you had any message for the boys at Dundee, what would it be?
He said simply: “you can do it”
We hope to catch up with all as many previous award winners as possible, so requests will be considered. For a list of award winners follow this link