Sri Lanka Elle

History Sport of Sri Lanka Elle

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               It isnot clear as to when, where or by whom, game Elle was introduced. Even though one cannot finddefinitive sources on the origin of the sport, there is evidence to suggest that the game had been played before the dawn of 20th century.
A teamphotograph of an Elle team called ‘Hendala Greyhounds’ , which dates back to 1911, depicting the team members after a game of Elle, had been published. This indicates that the game may have been played by numerous organized groups from diverse areas.

                      The fact that the players inthe said photograph were clad in European attire instead of sportswear indicates that the game mighthave been popular among the middle class population of the era. The players are seen wearing neckties and suit coats. Existence of Elle in and around Hendala area as far backas 1900, is not accidental. It suggests that the game was an integral part of the lives of the people of such areas. It was deeply ingrained in their society which treated it as a powerful, attractive sport and it was often played in a festive setting. It is worthwhile to find out as to how Elle acquired this festive status. In predominantly Christian areas, people used to organize a game of Elle to coincide with the church feast which was invariably held on a Sunday.

                          The venue was the church premises or the adjoining church property. Games would start after the religious activities and it brought much delight to the villagers. Every village could boast of its Elle team which was a fair blend of youth and adults of the brawnier variety. This village team is pitted against a team from a neighboring village at such an occasion. At the end of the game the visitors were treated to a meal as well as soft drinks and tea. This is a custom which was deeply rooted in the village neighborhoods.
The sport of Elle and the players do carry a unique identity. Even after gaining independence from the British in 1948, Sri Lankansociety could not break the shackles of colonial influence completely for a
considerable period of time. Even Elle could not rid itself from this influence and the remnants of the colonial past could be seen mainly in the symbolic representations. The names of Elle teams during the fifth decade ( 1940s ) provide ample evidence to such symbolism. One could recall names such as ‘young boys’, ‘happy boys’ , ‘super sixteen ‘ , ‘young eagles ‘ , ‘red arrow’ , ‘red heart’, ‘jolly boys’, ‘red eagles’, ‘blue star ‘ and ‘young star’ as examples.

                 Even the modern day Elle teams adhere to various naming conventions. Some carry names of ancient kings. Others identify themselves with catholic saints, nature, and virtues. There are teams name themselves after the village from which they hail or unique attributes of the area.
Sri Vijaya of Colombo Central, Gamini of Udammita , Mahasen of Kudakahapola, Vijaya of, Peellawatta Gemunu of Batuwatta, Sri weera Gamini of Yakkaduwa, Wickrama of Miriswatta, Parakrama of Katunayaka are the names and places of origin of those teams that carry names of ancient Kings.
St. Sebastian’s of Kandana, St Jude of Mahabage, St. Nicolai of Bopitiya , St Maria of Andiambalama, St. Xavier’s of Katana, St Anthony’s Peralanda, Fatima of Mudukatuwa, St. Ana of Boralessa are just a few of many clubs that bear the names of catholic saints.
Some teams name themselves after celestial objects or national symbols. Nagena tharu ( rising stars ) of Narangodapaluwa, Ran tharu (golden stars ) of Morakkuliya, Dilena Tharu ( shining stars ) of Modara, Sandatharu ( moon and stars ) of Boralessa, Ridee Tharu ( Silver Stars ) of Jae la, Sinha Tharu ( Lion stars ) of Kerangapokuna, Hiru Ras ( Rays of the Sun ) of Bolla, Chandrika ( Satellite ) of Mabima, Sikura Tharu ( Star of Venus ) of Ragama, Nawaka Tharu ( Novice Stars ) of Henatiyana. is a reperesentative sample of such names.

                                       Another group of team names consist of good qualities or virtues. Examples are Muditha ( happiness ) of Kerawalapitiya, Eksath ( united ) of Hendala, Samagi ( Harmony, Unity ) of Welisara, Ekamuthu (unity ) of Palugahawela, Wasana (felicity) of Ganemulla, JayaShrie (Hail) of Kopiyawatta, Nirmala (immaculate) of Kimbulapitiya, and Mangala (prosperity, lucky) of Ekala.
Yet another group have named themselves according to the geographical characteristics of their area. Sayuru Thera ( Beachfront ), Sagara ( ocean ), Sagara Tharu ( Stars of the Ocean ), Sayuru Rala ( Tide of the Ocean ), Sayuru Tharu ( Stars of the Ocean ) of Kepumgoda, Hendala , Thalahena, Usweltakeiyawa, Palliyawatta respectively do remind us of the coastal areas in which these villages are situated. You can also find the River Kelani the broadest river of the Island, featuring prominently in team names such as Kalyani ( Kelani river ) of Peliyagoda, or Kelani Nadi ( River Kelani ) of Kittampahuwa.
Time of Day is an yet another theme on which teams are named. Aruna ( Dawn ) of Totalanga, Udaya ( Morning ) of Sedawatta, Sandya ( Evening ) of Totalanga, Arunodaya ( Dawn ) of Sedawatta Deepasika (Nonimana Pahana)of Horagolla are the prominent clubs in that category.

     
              Elle is a game which could be played by the entire cross section of population, Men, women, children, adults, young ones, old folk : Everyone can take part with no restrictions. Elle is simple, easy, less demanding and uncomplicated.
In casual play the ball is formed by various fruits of many indigenous trees. Sometimes they use a dried fruit of Wel Kaduru ( Cerbera manghas ) as the ball. Another indigenous fruit Jambola is also used in its raw form as the ball. A seasoned fruit of local orange or Dodam is also a good alternative.Some of them use a crumpled piece of hard paper. A ball formed by strings of dried rubber called ‘ottapalu’ serves well as a durable form of an Elle ball. The striker is formed by a piece of bamboo, a piece of a mammoty handle, a handle of an axe or a stalk of a coconut leaf. These ingredients areabundant in the countryside.

කාන්තා එල්ලේ කණ්ඩායම් (Women)Ladies Elle Teams

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එල්ලේ තරග විස්තර සමගින් ඔබගේ වෙළද දැන්වීම් අප වෙත ලබා දෙන්න.
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Wel Kaduru ( Cerbera manghas )


        Flat Coconut plantations with its towering coconut trees, barren paddy lands, Fields right after the harvest, Sandy coastal lands, and unutilized land provide ample space that serve the purpose of stadia for the sport of Elle.

Each team consists of 20 players of which four are reserves. Playing team comprises 16 players. The minimum number of players in a team is 12. Be it three or four players, Be it 20 or more, Elle provides the opportunity of participating in a game that could be played in a friendly manner devoid of ill will. The game which relied on humble roots with such simple equipment has evolved during the last 10 -12 decades. Now it on the verge of gaining international recognition.
Today a properly standardized ball, bats formed with exquisite craftsmanship using finest local Bamboo, enjoy pride of place in the Elle arena. Official attire of the players, Playing field with marked boundaries, board of umpires clad in proper clothing in keeping with the international code of administration, score sheets that record each and every minute detail of a game, are the features one can not ignore in the present game.
A quick look at the technical sophistication, skill, technique and the quality of modern day Elle would make the Elle fan and others wonder as to whether this really is the game of Elle that existed a century ago. That honor should be shared by everyone who toiled and sacrificed, perspired and shed tears for the sport they loved so much. Sport of Sri Lanka Elle it was pastime game and Sri Lanka National Sport in year between 1960-1980.

Elle is a game which could be played by the entire cross section of population, Men, women, children, adults, young ones, old folk : Everyone can take part with no restrictions. Elle is simple, easy, less demanding and uncomplicated.
In casual play the ball is formed by various fruits of many indigenous trees. Sometimes they use a dried fruit of Wel Kaduru ( Cerbera manghas ) as the ball. Another indigenous fruit Jambola is also used in its raw form as the ball. A seasoned fruit of local orange or Dodam is also a good alternative.Some of them use a crumpled piece of hard paper. A ball formed by strings of dried rubber called ‘ottapalu’ serves well as a durable form of an Elle ball. The striker is formed by a piece of bamboo, a piece of a mammoty handle, a handle of an axe or a stalk of a coconut leaf. These ingredients are abundant in the countryside.

MATERIALS

(1) EllE BAMBOO (BAT)

The ELLE bat should be made out from well seasoned bamboo and the length and breadth of the Bat can be in accordance with the requirements of the Striker or the player. Its circumference should not be changed under any circumstances. However, the Elle Bat could be bound with material without using any metal in order to protect it from breaking or damaging.

(2) BALL

   Until such time a special ball is specifically made for ELLE Tennis balls may be used. The fur on the ball could be removed/shaved before use but removing of fur to make the rubber visible is strictly prohibited. A rubber ball or another light ball could be used instead of a Tennis Ball but it is of paramount importance that the ball used should be common to both teams.

3) EQUIPMENT USED IN THE PLAYING ARES

 Two posts ten (10) meters in height similar to a Bamboo Tree, six posts (2) centimeters in breadth and1 Meter in height and eight flags to be tied to the end of the posts. (The height of posts from ground level should be 1 meter)

(4) PLAY
(1) In a match where the Winners and losers are to be found, the  maximum number of Players to a team is Sixteen (16), and minimum being Twelve (12). The lesser number of players in a team does not make the number of players to be restricted for the same number in the opposing team. The balance players in a team could be added before the commencement of the third innings. (2) Striking or fielding could be decided upon on the toss of a coin
(5) FIELDING

(1) It is mandatory to keep a player to collect byes. The other players can be anywhere in the playing area outside the rectangular spot in front of the striker. Fielding could be done after the ball strikes the ELLE Bamboo but should be done without interference to the runners.
(2) The player collecting byes should come to his spot no sooner the striker comes to play. The player who is not acceding to the order of the Chief Referee and is not present at the spot to collect byes when the ball strikes the ELLE Bamboo is prohibited to collect byes.
(6) STRIKING OF THE BALL

 1. In the commencing of the first Inning, both teams are entitled to a Trial Hit and scoring of runs will count thereafter.
2. Game/play commences once the striker (Batsman) comes to strike. The Ball could be in the hands of any player in the field but should be handed over to the Striker. The Striker could use the same ball or another ball and could handover same to the Putter (Bowler) after displaying the way it should be sent to him.
3. The Ball should be sent to the Striker from a Player from his own team. He should send the ball being inside the enclosure. The ball should be put over the height requested by the Striker. Sending of the ball along the ground to the Striker is not allowed and should not be outside the enclosure.
4. The maximum balls allowed to a Striker at a time are five (5), which is inclusive of the balls being sent to him along the ground.
5. The Striker should hit the ball which is sent above the ground before it falls to the Ground. The Striker could hit the ball after going back but cannot hit the ball by keeping the both his legs outside the semi circle in his front.
6. If the ball proceeds further with the stroke of the Striker, he or the substitute runner should start running. The Runner has to keep his left hand inside and start running passing stops 1, 2 and 3 in that order pass the left byes post pass the byes line with the full body to score a point. Till such time the Striker or the Runner completes his round the ball cannot be stricken again.
7. Once the Runner stops or completes a round, the next Striker (Batsman) can come to strike. Play commences again after the ball is being handed over to the Striker. The Striker cannot change his position once he comes to strike.
8. Runners who cannot complete a round at one time can avoid being run out by keeping their two legs on either side of the line at Runners’ Rest. A Runner can pass a Runners’ Rest only after passing through the two posts. A Runner cannot come back to a Runners’ Rest which he had already passed.
9. A Runner who had stopped at the Runners’ Rest, can start running again only when the next Batsman strikes or when a Player is ruled out. This too if considered necessary and Two Players (Runners) cannot be at Runners’ Rest at the same time. The first Runner should go and give place to the Second. While running the Second Runner cannot overtake the First.
10. The services of a substitute Runner could be obtained by the Striker upon informing to the Chief Referee. When a substitute Runner is obtained, the Striker cannot run. The substitute runner should start running from the front of the left side out post. He could start running once the ball leaves the hand of the Bowler but cannot pass centre line till the ball strikes the ELLE Bamboo.
11. When the substitute runner is out, the Striker will lose his chance of playing in that particular inning. The Striker has the option to strike continuously or at different times. The Striker once he comes to strike cannot leave the premises and avoid striking.
12. By taking such a Catch or by hitting Runners the Strikers can be made out by the Fielding Team. Those Players who are correctly stationed at Runners’ Rest and those who have completed rounds and those who change sides at a Runners’ Rest cannot be made out in this manner.
13. The Opposing Team can commence striking once all the Players are out in the Team.
14. Once the substitute Striker is put in the previous Striker should get behind the striking point,
(7) HOW A STRIKER IS RULED OUT
1. A Strike is ruled out when the ball does not connect the ELLE Bamboo thrice; when the Ball strikes and go back straight, if the ball goes back through the out posts after going up; if the ball comes back without going out from the rectangular spot, if the ball comes back after striking out posts; if it comes forward after hitting the back of the out line; if the striker hits the ball after keeping both his legs in front of the semi-circle, and when the Striker comes to play when the substitute Runner is at Runners’ Rest. If the stricken ball knocks on the Striker or the Substitute Runner, in such case too the Striker is ruled out.
2. A Striker is also ruled out, when the substitute runner crosses the Centre line before the ball strikes the ELLE Bamboo, when a Runners’ Rest is passed by keeping at least one leg outside the posts of Runners’ Rest, coming back after passing the line between the posts, stopping after keeping both legs on one side of the line, the first runner when two Runners stop0 at a Runners’ Rest and when the Bowler (Putter) comes to his circle to send the Ball after which running is started.
3. A Striker is also ruled out when the Second |Runner overtakes the first Runner (in instances other than accidents), for completing the round unless through the strike and out posts with the full body, failing to run on the orders of the Chief Referee, and when stop0 running before completing the round.
4. A Striker is also ruled out when he (or substitute runn er) runs all over the ground to avoid striking with the ball by Fielding side and also being at a Runners’ Rest not acceding to the order of the Referee.
5. A Striker is not considered out when the ball is kept in the hand and patted. If the ball strikes a Runner while running and when not at a Runners’ Rest, then he is ruled out.
6. A Striker is also ruled out when a member of the fielding side catches the ball without the support of anything, a ball which slips from a fielder is caught by another, when a ball which goes up after hitting a striker is caught, and when the ball is in the hand of a fielder even if he falls to the ground. If a ball strikes at a place below the height of a fielder, it is considered as a ball which has hit the ground.
7. Obstructing of ruling out any player in the Strikers side is also considered as out.
8. If a Striker who enters the circle for striking leaves the circle that is also considered as a out.
(8) CANCELLING OF STRUCK BALLS
1. Strikers balls can be cancelled if the ball falls into a well inside the field which cannot be reached easily. Also the strikers balls can be cancelled when the ball settles in a place which is out of reach by the players and also when the ball is damaged in view of striking.
2. When the playing is stopped and if the players commence the game without the knowledge of the Referee, here again the Referee has the power to cancel the balls.
3. If the organizers feel that there is a danger for the fielding team a decision can be taken by the organizers to declare the area as a prohibited area. However, this situation must be brought to the notice before the playing commences. Note: For cancelled strikes there is no point or an out given.
(9) CHANGING OF PLAYERS
In the event of a four innings game the additional names of players can be included to particate in the game before the third innings commences. It is prohibited to include the names of players who have been removed. However, if there is an accident to any players there is every right to change the players until the game is over.
(10) OBTAINING OF MARKS AND CANCELLATION
1. When the ball goes forward after striking the runner is entitled to get a mark after running is completed round the circle. If the Strike is an Out there will be no mark even if the running around the circle is completed .
2. Marks obtained through Striking after violating rules and also marks obtained through running by violating rules will all be cancelled.
3. All matters pertaining the marks shall be decided by the Board of Referees.
(11) CANCELLATIN OF COMPETITIONS
1. Winning would be decided with one extra mark. After the winning side is declared the game has to come to an end.
2. If it is a competition with four rounds ( innings) then the marks of the two rounds have to be added to decide on the winning side and the losing side.
3. The way of commencing of the third innings would depend on the marks obtained at the two first innings. If the Team which started the second innings does not obtain at least half of the marks obtained by the Team who started the first innings, then the third innings would be commenced by the Team which started the second innings. (E.g. No innings would be given if obtained in the order of 8/15, 11/20) After innings are given and during the third innings the marks were to exceed, then the Team which started the first innings should be given permission to reply.
4. In the event both Teams obtain the same marks, there will two innings with 15 balls allowed to be put by each team. In event this time also the marks were equal, then there will be allowed another 5 balls. If again this time as well the marks were equal then a decision is taken on the toss of a coin.
5. In the event the competition has to be postponed due to bad weather or due to some other reason, then the game has to be started from the same place in the same field. There should be present at least 12 players on the first day. Minimum fulfillment should be done from the extra players. Balls used on the first should be used. Extra players cannot be put in third and fourth innings. With the consent of the two teams a new game can even be commenced.
6. In the event it is considered that the marks obtained is quite sufficient and also even if all the players are not OUT, the Team Leader has the right to decide to put the game to an end and allow the other team to continue. If it is a decision taken by the Chief referee the remaining players should be allowed to Strike if a necessity arises.
(12) RESTRICTED BALL GAMES
1. For an inning the number of balls allowed 40.
2. Only eight Teams can be invited for a Competition for a day.
3. When marks are equal a competition should be held restricted to five Balls. In other cases the number of balls allowed should not be below 40.
(13) SPECIAL DECISIONS ON RULES
1. The back of the field is limited by the two post erected for OUT and the OUT line in between them.
2. Lands less than the players height and which are quiet are decided as Ground. All clothes worn by Players are treated as body.
3. Touching of OUT Posts or posts at Runners’ Rest should not be a reason for removing them. A mistake which was going to happen by taking one step in a Runners’ rest can be rectified. Raising one leg when stopping is not considered as wrong
4. When Striking a ball the striking Bat getting thrown out from the hands or running by taking Bat in hand is no reason for a OUT. The Striker should at all times prevent this type of things happening. The Ball which strikes the Bat and going forward after hitting the OUT line, hitting a player’s body and getting back or the Ball hitting the OUT posts and moving forward or back, are all not reasons for a OUT.
5. Striking a Ball after it falls down or touch the hand are not considered as right Strikes.
6. Stopping at Runners’ rest without running when running has to be continued, leaving the Runners’ rest and refusal to run are reasons for a OUT.
7. A mistake which was going to happen at the Stopping Point and at the point of completing the Circle can be corrected.
8. Both Teams shall use common Balls. Heating the Balls and colouring them are prohibited.
9. It is no reason for an OUT keeping a part of the back leg on the Runners’ Rest line and the front part of the leg on the line of the semi circle.
10. All the players in the fielding Team should refrain from blocking the players when running and hitting them very hard from the Ball. At the same time batting Team players without staying in their proper places should not block the fielding team . When running if a player hits a person in the fielding Team and falls down , the fielding player should not hit him with the Ball.
11. Changing of any decision given by mistake or a decision given for hitting the body of the referee remains with the judging Board.
12. Before the commencement of the third innings the named extra players can be included by informing the Chief Referee. Those players who have left cannot come again. In the event there is an accident changing of players and including of players can be done.
13. If the Organizers so desire they can restrict the first competition to one inning, time of an inning to 35 minutes and the number of Balls to 40.
14. When playing is stopped temporarily if the runners have started to run from the Runners’ Rest, such runners should be sent back to the original point.
15. When a player is on the Runners’ Rest he could accord his wishes change the side. On this occasion hitting from Ball should not be done.
16. It cannot be considered as a correct Stop at the Runners’ Rest if the legs of the player drags forward when trying to stop at the Runners’ Rest or raising one leg.
17. If anything is done by the batting Team in violation of the set rules the Chief Referee has the right to treat as an OUT or depriving of marks. If this happens from the Fielding Team the Chief Referee has the right to treat as a not OUT or to give marks.
18. All players stay five meters behind the striking Point, except the Striker and the Assistant Runner.
19. A Team found fault of putting players against the set Rules without the permission of the Chief Referee or committed an offence regarding use of Balls shall be considered as defeated.
20. When a Player is OUT and the Ball “Dead” permission should be given to change the person sending the Ball.
21. it shall not be a reasons for a OUT if when the Striker hits from the semi-circle the fingers of the front foot are on the semi-circle
22. It shall be a reason for loss of marks in the event the assistant runner starts running before the ball is served.
23. All Team members shall ensure that they are attired in a similar dress along with numbers printed on them. Players can wear short and long trousers , shirts with long sleeves, and also wear shoes with socks. It is prohibited to wear shoes with iron nails.
24. Those players not maintaining discipline and violating rules of the Game can be warned and can be taken out of the playing field after showing yellow and red Cards. No players are allowed to be substituted in place of those players removed.
25. Balls going up after striking people or animals are not considered as valid.
(14) RULES WHICH WILL CHANGE ONLY FOR SCHOOL MATCHES
1. One Inning will be limited to 80 balls. Reducing the Balls to less than 40 is not appropriate. When the Striker sends back the ball to the person serving the Ball after showing him his necessity, all balls served by the server would be counted. All balls delivered above ground level after the ball is handed over to the Bowler by the Striker will be accounted for the 80 balls. There will be no balls sent along the ground. Since an Inning is limited to 80 balls, the 5 ball rule applicable to Clubs will not apply. Even if all the Players are not out Innings will close after 8 balls.
2. The Striker himself should run and a substitute runner will be allowed only if injury is caused to players when playing is in progress.
3. The Running Area will be small. The distance from the Centre of the Spot where the Bowler is to the outer posts of the runners’ Rest and Striking Place will be 11 meters.
4. Apart from the aforesaid amendments, all other rules (on play, scoring of points, losing of points, declaring out and winrs and losers) will apply.
(15) DUTIES OF THE CHIEF REFEREE

1 Inspection regarding the suitability of the Playing area and the Materials utilized for play.
2. To station Assistant Referees at points where considered necessary.
3. To commence play safeguarding laid down rules and procedures. He shall also award points, forfeit points, cancel hits, stop play and declare Winners and Losers in accordance with laid down rules.
4. To observe any obstructions to the match and accordingly take steps to remove them.
5. To remove those who obstruct play and not playing in accordance with the rules of the Game.
6. To take decisions on ruling out after going to the required places
7. To consult the Assistant Referees when necessary
8. To blow whistle to attract attention of the onlookers and the players. To announce that the innings are coming to a close.
9. To hoist proper flag for a point scored and red flag for an out, to wave both flags when there is no point scored or an out.
10.To control all activities until the match is over.