25th July 1999
The Sri Lanka national netball team to take part in the 10th World Championships in Christ Church, New Zealand in September this year, comprising 12 players with four standbyes has been picked.
To all expectations the team will be led by the experienced Jayantha Somasekeram de Silva of Hatton National Bank and will have five other players from the HNB itself in the team.
In the standbyes list is the only schoolgirl, Anjana Thulari. She is from Girl's High School, Mt. Lavinia.
The Sri Lanka team: Deepthi Rupasinghe, Somitha Kumari de Alwis, Harshini Wijayalath, Nazleen Haseem and Gayathri Lankatilleke (Hatton National Bank); Damayanthi Jayatilleke, Manoji Preethi, Ratna Victoria, Niroshini Samandrika and Lakmini Gunasekera (Ports Authority) and Arunika Karawitage (Ceylinco Group). Standbyes: Thushari Dissanayake (Air Force), Narmada Wijeratne (Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation) and Yamuna Priyayadarshini (Anuradhapura), Anjana Thulari (Girl's HS, Mt. Lavinia).
By Bernie Wijesekera
The battle scarred Sri Lanka Army, who will be celebrating their 'Golden Jubilee' starting on Aug 1st '99, despite exigencies of duty, will mark the occasion, with the participation of teams from the neighbouring countries - India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
The Sri Lanka Army, was formed on Oct. 10, '49 and its first Lankan Commander was General Anton Muttukumaru. He's now 90 years old and stil battling out. He will be one of the honoured guests at this great happening.
This was revealed by the Army Commander Lt. Gen. Srilal Weerasuriya, at a media briefing to outline the programme, held at its headquarters on July 22.
Gen. Weerasuriya, was associated by Brig. D.S.G. Kempitiya, (Secretary, Army Sports Board) Brig. P.G. Charles (Chairman Army Volleyball) and Brig. S.D. Tennakoon (Arm Football). Gen. Weerasuriya, said that the Sri Lanka Army sportsmen in the past have contributed much for the country at the national level, in various disciplines. Football, Volleyball, Basketball and Boxing, where the soldiers made a great impact.
There is friendly relationship with our neighbouring countries - India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, be it on and off the field. We have invited their services teams to participate in a football tournament to be staged at the Sugathadasa Stadium. Pakistan and Bangladesh have confirmed their participation, but India has still to confirm. Two services teams Air Force and the Navy, too will join the fray, which will be on a league basis. It will kick-off on Aug. 1, where two matches will be played each day. The Finals on Aug 10.
The volleyball tournament, too will spike off on Aug. 1, at the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium.
Basketball, another popular sport where the soldiers produced some outstanding players of the calibre of Dr. C. Thurairaja, Rohan de S. Daluwatte, Vicum Siriwardena and Randeligama, Sgt. Amaradasa will be given due recognition. An open K.O. tournament for schools and clubs will be held in late October, '99.
Come Jan. year 2,000, plans are afoot for a boxing contest where India, Pakistan and B'desh will take to the ring. Army had produced some fine boxers at the national level, namely Jaroof, M.Y. Johran, M. Weerakody etc. This championship should give that much needed exposure to the local pugilists, who are starved of competition. Hope, it will be an open contest?
When it comes to boxing one can't forget the services rendered by former Chairman sports Board, Maj. M. Kandiah, who did yeoman service to uplift this sport among the soldiers.
Q - Are you aware that in the past the Army had quality sportsmen of the class of late Denzil Kobbekaduwa, one of the finest scrumhalves to hail from Trinity, versatile sportsman Dr. C. Thurairaja, Dr. H.I.K. Fernando (tagged as Asia's best wicket-keeper), Rohan de S. Daluwatte an athlete par excellence (broke the British Army record in the hop and step), Gunadasa, Amaradasa, Linus Dias (a champion long distance runner) Parry Liyanage, Jupana Jayawardena ( the cog-in-the-wheel in Army rugby to day) Sunil Ranasinghe, Wasantha Perera, Bala Francis, Bertie Dias, just to name a few.
Today the Army has quantity allround, but there isn't much quality in the intake. Any comments?
A .You are right. This is not confined to Army alone. But we are battling out to improve their skills in whatever trade, including sports and give them all encouragement.
A good example is rugby, with the advent of All Blacks coach, Kelvin Farrington, Gen. Weerasuriya added. They are taught the spirit of the game is more important than the outcome. If you don't lose, then one will not learn how to win.
Gen. Weerasuriya, was fired with questions which were not relevant to the 50th anniversary, but still he led from the front to answer them with tact, calm and composure which won for him and the Army much admiration.
All funds for this 50th anniversary are self-funded and supported by wellwishers. No public funds will be utilised.
An Army tattoo, will be held at the Kheththarama Stadium from Aug. 23, 24 and 25. The last one was held in 1983.
According to a senior source of the Army, a marathon will be held in the outstation to culminate the occasion. It will be an open event. To add colour to it, foreign runners probably will be invited.
Natasha Kodituwakku overall captain for Asia Pacific
On seniority Natasha Kodituwakku of Colombo International School and the former St. Bridget's swimmer has been picked to be the overall captain of the Sri Lankan Swimming and Diving team for the 13th Asia Pacific Age Group championships from August 20th to 25th in New Delhi, India.
This championship is conducted by the All India Swimming Federation in association with the Asian Swimming Federation which will be held at the Takatora Swimming Pool.
Sri Lanka will be represented by seven boys swimmers, and six girl swimmers with two boy and one girl in diving.
Gihan Ranatunga of S.Thomas' Mount Lavinia, the senior and the most experienced of the boys have been picked as the boys' captain with Theekshana Ratnasekera of Musacus as the girls' captain.
After a lapse of many years Sri Lanka will be represented by a brother and sister combination of Dasun and Theekshana Ratnasekera.
The swimming team will comprise, Gihan Ranatunga (Captain), Dasun Ratnasekera (S.Thomas' Mount Lavinia), Asela Pradeep, Ruchira Perera (Ananda) Shevantha de Silva, Pasan Muthumala, Thilanka Samaradivakara (Trinity),
Natasha Kodituwakku (Overall Captain), Theekshana Ratnasekera (Captain), Radeesha Daluwatta, (Colombo International School), Menaka de Silva (St Bridget's), Ruvika Fernando (Mahamaya Kandy), Chandri Haputhanthri (Ladies College).DIVING-Boys-
Juhani de Mel (Colombo International School), Isiri Kankanage (Royal),
Harini Jayasekera (Visakha).
Farzan Sikkander - Manager, E.G.A.Wilson- (Coach), Diving Coach Mahinda Liyanage, Lady Chaperone-Ramani Rajapaksa.
A galaxy of foreign golf stars descended on the Ridgeways over the weekend, hell bent on taking our title event. Four each from India, Pakistan and Malaysia will vie for positioning with a formidable crop of Sri Lankans battling to defend our pride of place. The course is looking great and the l9th hole looks impeccable at the Royal Colombo Golf Club.
Rain, rain, rain
Absolutely foul weather dampened styles and bold stroke play. Saturday, the first day of the preliminaries, was washed out completely and all events were postponed for Sunday when the weather turned to be bright, breezy and superbly comfortable.
Hoy the star
On the first day of play Chong G. Hoy was the rising star. He played great golf. stroking very accurately and confidently to feature prominently in 3 events. In the Lever Bros. Shield event he in the company of Doctor C. Thurairaja and Shehan Ramanayake struck a formidable gross 227 to embrace a good looking decorative shield. A. Ahamed, N. Hettiarachchi and Sahel Saedin came 2nd.
In the Lever Bros Trophy event for the best individual gross score Chong G. Hoi shot into a commanding position very quickly and maintained the lead until the end to stay on 70 and take the coveted trophy beating his team mate M. Sasideran with a better back nine. Sasideran, another formidable player, struck 70 too but his back score was not good enough. The best nett score team event for the Dudley Senanayake Trophy went to Norman Chandraratne, H Serasinghe and Laksiri de Mel who got well ahead of F J De Saram, Shirely de Silva, H M Samaranayake to win comfortably.
The young man from N'Eliya got acclimatised very quickly and with some astonishing putts collected an excellent nett 66 to win the Royal Colombo Golf Club Trophy beating Malaysian Chong G Hoy by a slender margin of one stroke.
Doctor C. Thurairaja in the Senior's Division was too good. He out-played Thiagalingam Nirmalalingam with consumate ease to settle for 76 against a comparatively poor 81. Thiagalingam was off colour with a widening waistline.
In the individual net score event for the Dr. Lance Fernando Trophy his close friend Sohli Captain outclassed a string of strong contenders. Retaining a style he captured very many years ago. Captain covered the course well within his handicap to end on 69 nett and the Trophy in his tender care. Tenacious Joe Perera was close behind with 70.
Ex Caddies excel
T Chandradasa, Lalith Kumara and Anura Rohana showed their class with scores of 71, 70 and 68 in their early outing with promise that there is much more to come. Chandradasa won the Victoria Cup and Pin Fernando Trophy.
In the other events Shehan Ramanayake a young bright spark won the Illangakoon Cup beating F. J. De Saram and De Saram with an excellent nett 66 beating Chandradasa 68 to walk away with the Sri Lanka Golf Union Trophy.
Sri Lanka played formidable golf in the team event to beat India for the Parlakamedi Trophy and Pakistan for the Zia-Ul-Haq Trophy. There were stacks of excellent performances and there were further stacks of missing balls, drowning balls, disappearing balls all as a result of straying shots off wild swipes. There were some spending more time looking for balls than playing with them and some others were found carrying pocket calculators to resolve their scores.
The star performances we have seen on the Ridgeways so far are clear indications to show that the future of Sri Lanka Golf is strongly ensconced in the talent and skills shown by our ex-caddies. We have many more star performers in the pipeline and you will be hearing about them before this year ends.
Practises at 9 p.m.
A fax sent by the Board of Control for Cricket signed by the Media Manager had requested the 25 spinners picked by D.Somachandra de Silva to attend practices at the NCC grounds, Maitland Place.
This fax had wanted the 25 spinners to be present at 9 p.m. and not 9 a.m.
Dropped like a hot brick.
A popular figure in the athletic world had his name taken off from those picked to officiate at the forthcoming 25th National Sports Festival athletic meet at the Bogambara Stadium in Kandy from August 13 to 15.
The reason for his chopping, Rover learns, is that a higher-up in the AAA had told the Minister that he had been called a smuggler of drugs.
A leading Club in Colombo had appointed three persons to conduct an inquiry about a senior member being kicked out by a junior member with a certain amount of clout.
But hot on the heels of this, Rover learns, one of those serving in the committee of inquiry was heard telling all those present that he was set to be rich for the next two generations at least if his dream comes true, which nearly did when he was offered the printing of tickets of this popular sport.
Where are the key tags?
An oficial of a leading sport in Sri Lanka had taken Rs. 70,000 from the controlling body for the making of key-tags which are yet to be seen while this same official had been entrusted with the supply of materials for the Gym. How come no noise?
At any cost
The Cricket Board official who owed a leading catering company in Kandy a large sum of money has now settled this sum, thanks to Rover exposing the case.
But Rover learns that this official has completed a luxury 3-storied house in the hills working hand-in-glove with a sibling.
Materials imported by the Cricket Board are supposed to have been looted and sold at an underground sports shop in the hills. What action is the Interim Board taking about this?
Rewarded at last?
Rover exposed a Regional Official of the Cricket Boad trying to encash a Development Committee cheque to pay his World Cup trip loan. Hot on the heels of this Rover understands that this same official has been appointed to chair the organising committee for the Test match against Australia in Asgiriya. Hope the bank loan will be paid now at least.
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