From having only 3 volleyballs to gaining three major honours – Uhana Thissapura College

20th DSI Super Sports Championship 2022

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20th DSI Super Sports Championship 2022

The 20th DSI Super Sports Schools Volleyball Championship 2022, which was completed a few weeks ago at the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium in Colombo, saw the young lasses of Uhana Thissapura come out on top.

translated by Tharushi Wijemanna

Uhana Thissapura College claimed the title in both Under 15 and Under 19 age groups whilst, the Under 17 girls claimed the runner up title in the Under 17 age category.

On top of that, Chathuri Poornima of Uhana Thissapura College won the award for the most valuable player under the age of 19 in the division.

P.G. Sarath, the principal of Uhana Thissapura College speaking to ThePapare.com said, “Talking about this victory, I see it more as a team effort of many individuals, especially Mr. Indika Pushpakumara the head coach, Manjula Niroshan the assistant coach and the teacher-in- charge of the schools’ volleyball team Mrs. Subhani Niroshika Siriwardane. They supported the school going beyond their limitations and for that I am forever grateful for them.

Not forgetting the players, their only motive for the last season was to gain the championship title in all age groups, and they worked so hard for the victory they claimed today, making me, the school, their loved ones and themselves proud. Once again, I am very thankful for each and every individual who is behind these victories.’’

Furthermore, in his statement he also stated that ‘’These achievements have not only made the people in Uhana proud but also the entire Ampara District. He said that many individuals had assembled to nurture the young spirits while preserving faith in these sportswomen.

As a school with 255 children, we value the efforts of everyone who has reached out to us, especially the residents of the Ampara region and the worldwide benefactors. These parties have gone above and beyond to assist us in every manner they can. And I hope that this triumph serves as a little mark of appreciation for them.’’

Uhana Thissapura College,

There’s indeed a huge background story, when talking about development of the school.

One of the initial government initiatives in Sri Lanka gave birth to Uhana Thissapura. The launch of this project was responsible for the establishment of the Uhana Thissapura College which is surrounded by a picturesque environment.

Despite the fact that this government program increased employment options, Uhana Thissapura College has never really been able to come up. The school was labeled as one of level III schools, none of the teachers were willing to work at this school of their own accord.

More often than not, the teachers were compelled to labor at Thissapura College in order to preserve their employment.

With the appointment of Mr. Chaminda Udaya Kumara as the school principal, the school experienced some hope for the first time in decades.

What’s the backstory behind the volleyball team’s formation?

The credit goes to former principal Mr. Chaminda Udaya Kumara for creating the volleyball team. He is the man behind all these triumphs.

With his arrival to the school, he had to change the whole system of the school management, and he started slowly but steadily, first he took steps in working on students’ discipline. This is where it all started.

By creating a school volleyball team, Mr. Chaminda had a brilliant idea for keeping the pupils in the classroom. And participation in volleyball practices was compulsory for all pupils.

They debuted the sport in the middle of 2014, and while it was difficult to keep the pupils engaged for the first few months, as time went on, they grew to love it. The efforts of Mr. Chaminda did not go in vain as they made history by winning their first All-Island championship title in the under 14 girls’ category at the DSI Super Sport Volleyball Championship in 2016.

Once more, the squad was under the guidance of coach Indika Pushpakumara, a former student of that particular institution. Indika Pushpakumara excelled at gymnastics and karate in addition to being a volleyball prodigy.

Unfortunately, there are no volleyball teams for boys at the institution. These lads have been trying to discover ways to lessen their parents’ difficulties in their impoverished settings since they were little.

The lads at this school are not very interested in playing volleyball since they have enlisted in the cadet program in the hope that it will guarantee them work once they graduate.

Special Awards!

Starting off from 2015, the school started competing in many tournaments, including the Provincial Tournament in 2015.

With the victory of one of their teams out of the two that competed in the competition in 2016, all of their efforts began to bear fruit.

The two teams then represented the school at the national tournament in 2017.

They received several special honors at renowned events. All of these triumphs and honors are a reward for their perseverance and commitment to the sport.

For the Thissapura College volleyball team 2017 was the year of glory as they won three championship crowns. With the winning momentum in place, the team won six more special honors in 2018.

A total of four teams from the college [U11, U13, U15 & U17 age groups] competed in the 2019 national competition. They won three championship awards and one runner- up award.

In 2020 and 2021, the competition could not take place because to the Covid-19 epidemic.

20th DSI Super Sport 3 final games in a Nutshell,

They came out strong this year [2022], winning two titles in U15 and U19 as well as runner-up in U17.

Under 15

The grand finale of under 15 age category was between Thissapura College and Hungama Vijayaba College. Thissapura College bagged the victory with an easy win over their opponents. [3-0]

Final scores of the under 15 age category, 25/6, 25/6 & 25/16.

Under 15 Team – Pasiduni, Randima Sewandi, Jineeshi Madumali, Kaveesha Dakshika. Kushani Hasarangika, Harshani Nisansala, Rashmi Lakmini, Chanchala Jayathunga, Pabalusha Sathsarani & W.M. Hashini

Under 17

Hungama Vijayaba Vidyala played against Thissapura College in the finale of the under 17 age category, Hungama Vijayaba College defeated Thissapura College with a 3-1 win, the final score line 25/15, 27/15, 25/19.

Under 17 Team – Tharushi Dhananjani, Samara Nishadi, Subhashini Madhushani, Himashini Dewminin Silva, Endhi Upeksha, Nethmi Dhananjani & Mayuri Sewandhi

Under 19

In the championship match for the under-19 age group, Palmadulla Gankanda Madya Maha Vidyalaya faced off against Thissapura College over an intense grand finale. The final score was 25/17, 27/18, 25/13, and Thissapura College triumphed 3-1.

Under 19 Team – Chathuri Poornima, Kasuni Kalhari, Nishadhi Kavya, Divyanjalee Punchalika, S.A.K Madhushani, Umesha Sewandhi, Sathya Sewandhi

D.M. Samara Nishadi, the U17 team’s captain, was awarded the category’s best shooter, while H.M. Sulakshana Pasinduni, L.K.M. Harshani Nisansala, and H.M. Jineshi Madushani, the U15 team’s captain, were named best player, best shooter, and best setter, respectively.

K.P. Sathya Sewwandi, the U19 skipper, got the Best Spiker award, and the Best Player and Best Setter awards went to H.M. Chathuri Poornima and R.P. Kasuni Kalhari, respectively.

In a country like Sri Lanka, where sports like volleyball are played only out of passion, the volleyball journey of Uhana Thissapura Vidyalaya is an amazing tale of the dedication and sacrifices of children, the coach, the school principal, Sarath, the teacher in charge of sports, and all the other teachers. The neighborhood was also incredibly helpful to the kids and the school. This is the ideal illustration of how, when people support one another, nothing is insurmountable