Big boost for Indoor Cricket
By M.Shamil Amit
The Ceylon Indoor Cricket Association (CICA) which was formed only six
months ago in May 12, 2001 have made vast strides. It has successfuly conducted
domestic tournaments and an international tournament which they conducted
recently at the Austasia Sports Complex in Talawathugoda. Before these
tournaments they went on a tour to Australia where the team only lost one
match. In short within the first six months of existence they have organized
three national tournaments visited Australia and organized an International
tournament against India which was played for the Pepsi Trophy and also
Speaking to The Sunday Times after a press briefing held at the Galadari
Hotel recently to hand over the sponsorship package Dakshitha Anthony the
Managing Director of the Austasia Sports Complex said that there are over
1300 indoor cricket players in Sri Lanka and is becoming very popular.
The CICA is now a fully fledged member of the world body of indoor cricket
along with four others which are Australia, England, New Zealand and South
Africa and India is yet an affiliated member. Dakshitha further said that
at the recently held meeting of the world body in mid October that was
held in Perth, Australia the CICA was unanimously awarded to conduct the
5th World Cup in Sri Lanka.
It was a big boost for the CICA as they had to compete with England
and eventually succeeded. The beauty of this prestigious event is that
both the men's and women's tournaments are conducted concurrently. This
is the first time Sri Lanka is going to have a full World Cup event here
as a sport. Also the first Indoor World Cup to be held in the Asian region.
All together nine countries are billed to participate with more than 700
players and officials involved. It also coincides with the10th year of
the World Cup. So far three World Cups have been played. The first in 1996
in England,1998 in Australia and in the year 2000 in South Africa. The
fourth World Cup is due to be played next year in New Zealand.
After the CICA got the world cup confirmation all indoor cricket playing
nations are keenly waiting to tour Sri Lanka. Australia and New Zealand
will be visiting Sri Lanka in January 2002 for a tri nation tournament.
The CICA have also planned more domestic and international tournaments
within the next few years. In 2002 they hope to tour India and in June
the same year arrangements are being made to play a series between Sri
Lanka and South Africa juniors. In the year 2003 they are planning to organise
an Asian indoor cricket tournament among Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh
and Thailand. These are few of the planned tournaments before the World
Cup in 2004 which will be played from August 14 to August 22.
All facilities are available at the Austasia Sports Complex. It has
provisions for live TV coverage, medical centre, health club, changing
rooms, restaurant bar, food court, conference hall, media facilities, technical
facilities and sports facilities for all indoor games and many more that
is required to conduct an international tournament. Before the world cup
tournament the CICA are planning to construct two more indoor cricket stadiums
in Kandy and Kurunegala.
Dakshitha concluded by saying all success have been due to the assistance
given by their main sponsors Jet Asia spearheaded by Dhammika Gunaratne.
Jet Asia will also be the official Travel Agents for the world cup.
Another tower of strength is Sri Lanka's wicket keeper Romesh Kaluwi-tharana
who is the Director Technical of the Austasia Indoor Complex. along with
the other officials of the CICA. And in time to come indoor cricket will
be a major sport in Sri Lanka.
Royal in the forefront
The Fifth Annual Royal College Awards Ceremony will be held at the Navarangahala
on November 29 at 6.30 p.m.
Speaking at a press conference held at the Royal Sports Complex in Stanley
Wijesundara Mawatha. The Principal H.L.B.Gomes stressed that Royal have
been in the forefront in both the academic and sports activities in Sri
Lanka. Royal which was established in 1835 under the name of Colombo Academy
has become one of the prestigious schools in the island. The enthusiam
and determination shown by the students in Royal College in sports in the
past few years have brought honour to the school. Royal have produced young
and talented sportmen who have represented the national team at junior
and senior level. In appreciation to these dedicated Royalists all deserving
and outstanding sportsmen will be honoured by being awarded the colours
at the colours awarding ceremony. The principal further said that the school
has 24 sports for which colours are awarded for 19 sports and this year
Royal have produced 28 boys who have been members of either the junior
or senior national team in various sports.
Ajith Peiris the Secretary of the Old Boys Union said that the present
principal has taken great pains to upgrade all sports activities at the
school and has been a tower of strength to the boys. He also said that
the old boys of the school together with the present boys was instrumental
in putting up a sports complex for the school which cost Rs. 70 million
and it was completed in just two years. The boys are very fortunate to
have these facilities and have reaped the benefit by producing outstanding
sportsmen in all sports.
The feature of the award ceremony is that the organising and all work
involved are being done by the students of the school. There will also
be a musical show which will be provided by the students of the school.-