56th Junior National Championship; Double record duo steal limelight


The 56th Junior National Championship concluded today (26th) with 28 new meet records and a national record established during the 4day meet, which included 9sprint records and is a testament to the vast amount of talent that is available in the country.

Eight meet records were established on the final day of the event. The 400m & 100m sprint finals which received a lot of attention provided a thrilling contest which included 4 new meet record performances.

DDilshi Kumarasinghe of Walawa Central college, who has already entered the record books at the meet wining the U20 Girl’s 800m final clocking 2:09.13, continued to showcase her running ability as she went on to better the meet record she established just a day ago in the Girl’s 400m heats. Dilishi ran an impressive 54.36secs in the final to collect her second meet record of the tournament. She was awarded the Deshabandu Lt. Col. W. Wimaladasa Challenge Trophy presented to the best Athlete in the Girl’s Under 20 category for her record breaking performance in the 400m.

The Young Sprinting sensation from Weera Keppetipola National School, Akuramboda , Aruna Darshana increased his value stock and showcased why he is regarded as one of the premier young talents of the country and his ability to become a leading athlete who is capable of bringing international glory to the Island. Aruna had already laid claim to his second record in the meet during the 400m heats having already laid claim the fastest time clocked in the Under 20 Boy’s under 200m. In the Final day of the competition Aruna roared out of the blocks in the Boy’s Under 20m final and managed to run a time of 46.59seconds to erase a 14-year-old record of 47seconds flat which was held by Manoj Kumara of Walala A Rathnayake College. Aruna who will be one of Sri Lanka’s leading meddle prospects in both Junior South Asian Games and the Junior Asian Games was the winner of the D. StanlyThabrew Memorial Challenge Trophy presented to the Best Athlete in the Boy’s Under 20 category for his brilliant sub 47 run in the 400m finals

In the under 16 Girl’s final Kavindi Sanjana  Edirisinghe of Janadipathi Balika Vidyalaya, Nawala was leaps and bounds ahead of the rest clocking 57.47 to lay claim to a new meet record bettering the previous record of 58.52secs by JANS Jayasinghe in the event.

In the Boys Under 16 400m the spectators were treated to a thriller by the competitors as the athletes competed neck to neck vying for honors. Kakuwshalya Bans Abeywardana of Ananada Shrastalaya Matugama created new meet record with a brilliant time of 49.14 in the event to win gold while Sithum Jayasundara of Sir John Kothalawala MV clocked a time of 49.80 to better the previous record which was 49.91 by Maristonian Abishek Alwis

In the Boy’s Under 16 Triple jump Pasindu Malshan of St. Joseph’s College created a new meet record of 13.52m. Malindu Bethmage of Gateway College Rajagiriya was placed second while Joel Rowen of St Jude’s College Negombo was placed third in the event.

Hartley College dominated the Boy’s Under 20 event as they managed to book all three places in the podium of the event. S Piragasraj of Hartley College threw the hammer to a new meet record distance which was measured at 39.73m. V Jatharan was placed second while T Abishanth was placed to complete an all Hartley podium in the discus throw.  In the Boy’s Under 23 Hammer throw S D Perera created a new meet record with a distance of 42.81m.

Parami Wasanthi Maristella of Kuliyapitiya Central College collected her third gold medal at the Junior National championship in style when she managed to create a new record in the Girl’s Under 18 2000m Steeple chase clocking 6:59.63. It was Parami’s third gold in the competition having won Gold in the the Girl’s 800m and 3000m previously. She erased her school mate and team mate Asmika Herath’s record in the 2000m steeple chase and denied her of the gold in both 2000m steeple chase and in the 3000m. Parami won the Damayanthi Dharsha Challenge Trophy presented to the best athlete in the Girl’s Under 18 category for her record breaking effort in the 2000m steeple chase.

Petrite Rumesh Tharanga who claimed two new meet records in the Boy’s under 16 Discuss throw and Boy’s Under 16 Javelin was presented with the NAQNA Kurera Challenge Trophy presented to the best athlete of the Boy’s under 16 category.

High Jumper’s Purninma Jayamali Gunaratne was adjudged the best Girl’s Under 23 athlete for her gold winning performance of 1.80m while Ushan Thiwanka who created a new meet record with the third highest jump recorded by a Sri Lankan clearing 2.20m was adjudged the best Boy’s Under 23 athlete. He also won the trophy for the best performer of the meet.

The Junior National Championship also acted as a qualification trial for the upcoming Junior South Asian Athletic Championship which will be held in Sugathadasa stadium on the 5th and the 6th of May with the Sri Lankan squad set to be finalized by Saturday. Looking at the performance of the U20 athletes, Sri Lankan junior contingent is looking at a healthy medal bag at the regional competition and will be striving for putting in performance with qualification deadlines for the Junior Asian Athletic Championship which is scheduled to be held in Gifu, Japan fast approaching.