Fernando a proud product of Isipathana represented his alma mater from 1978 to 1982 captaining the side in his final year, where Isipathana remained unbeaten. Whilst at school Dilroy had the distinction of representing Havelock SC (1981) and joined the ranks of CR & FC the same year. The fly half and centre three quarter went on to represent the ‘Reds’ till 1986 before his career was cut short by injury. During the said period Dilroy won his national jersey and had the honour of representing Sri Lanka at the 1984 Asiad. Then saw the birth of a young rugby referee destined for greater heights.
In addition to officiating in over 550 games, Dilroy, a much respected figure in the game of rugby football has contributed in numerous capacities in the administration of the sport. Especially during his tenure as Secretary (2005) at the Sports Governing Body, the Sri Lanka Rugby Football Union (SLRFU), it was Fernando who was instrumental in initiating the concept of player contracts aimed at professionalizing the game.
“When I started refereeing, there was no money involved, I did so for the passion and love I had for the game,” said Dilroy Fernando when contacted by the ‘Daily Mirror’. “The two years I spent in Hong Kong (1993 – 95) helped me immensely in my career as a referee. My humble advise to youngsters taking up to refereeing is that immaterial of whoever or whichever side that plays, let the best that plays that afternoon win the game,” summed up Fernando.