Full name: Rochana Prabash Hettiarachchi
DOB: 3rd February 1994
Place of Birth: Kandy
Height: 5ft 9
Q&A time with Rochana:
Cassandra: What do you enjoy outside of rugby?
Rochana: I like to watch and play cricket, with my favourite player being Sanath Jayasuriya. I also like to watch rugby, my favourite player and club are Sonny Bill Williams and Kandy Sports Club.
Cassandra: Can you tell me about how you first started playing rugby, your transition into First XV rugby and your experiences until this moment?
Rochana: I first started rugby in 2006 when I was in grade seven for the U13s side. From that, I learnt ‘cat’ rugby which taught my team-mates and I the techniques of tackling and how to proceed with this safely. It was my best friend, Buwaneka Udangamuva, whom encouraged me to play and he too is on the team now. My first coach, Mr. Ananda Kasthuriarachchi was confident with my abilities and here I am. My family was very supportive in my decision to play; they come to all my games as well. In 2010 I was selected for the First XV squad and as junior rugby entails only fourteen minutes of play with half a field being used, the transition was difficult but I think the difference in weight training and the fitness sessions was the hardest. The most memorable experiences thus far have been becoming the 10-a-side champions in 2010, 7-a-side champions in 2012, becoming B Division champions in that same year and of course receiving the captaincy.
Cassandra: What was the 2012 season like for Dharmaraja?
Rochana: It was one of the best season’s we’ve had. Pre-season, we won the Sevens championship and then we were unbeaten in the league – what more could we have hoped for? In the Milo Cup we beat St Anthony’s in the quarter-final, 54-10, enabling us to advance to the semi-finals against Isipathana. Even though we lost that game, 25-17, it was one of the best and toughest matches we’ve played as it was the B Division champs against the A Division champs.
Cassandra: Can you give us a sneak peek into what’s in store for the 2013 season?
Rochana: Like the previous year, we want to be unbeaten but this time in the A Division.
Cassandra: Finally, what does life after school consist of?
Rochana: I definitely want to play for a club and I have hopes of one day being able to represent Sri Lanka, or even another country as well. In relation to studies, I hope to follow the business sector.