New faces in Youth Netball squad

Deepthi Alwis while training her squad in 2015. Gayanie Dissanayake in picture

The current Asian Youth Netball Champions Sri Lanka will tour South Korea on the 6th to the 13th of May for the Asian Youth Championships to be held in Jeonju city Korea.

It is reported that the initial 30 women squad which was proposed for the tournament has been brought down to 18 members.

The initial 30 member squad was chosen after selections were held at the Nawalapitiya Jayathilake sports complex on the 27th of January. It was further cut down to 18 members as the second round of selections meant that there were 12 members picked along with 6 reserve players whose names will be sent forward to the Minister of Sports.

The head coach of the championship winning squad Thamara Liyanage has been chosen for the position once again.

“I was appointed today (15th) therefore I will begin training on the 21st in Nawalapitiya” was what Ms. Thamara Liyanage had to say speaking to the media.

However without the presence of the head coach of the team, how the first two rounds selections took place is a noteworthy query. A head coach generally requires a first-hand knowledge of his or her future squad of players to be coached for a specific tournament.

The second cause for concern will be the fact that the new appointment will only last till the end of the Asian Youth Championships.

It is understood that the World Championships will commence 28 days after the conclusion of the Asian competition and how a replacement for the vacated post will be found within such short notice has puzzled many.

As the Champions of the previous Asian Championships held in 2015, Sri Lanka have automatically qualified for the World Champions. The victorious squad was led by Gayani Dissanayake and was coached by the current head coach Tamara Liyanage.

The Sri Lankan squad will take flight in July to Botswana to take part in the World Championships, while the Asian competition will commence on the 6th of May.

18 member squad

“Kaveetha Rajapaksha, Sapumali Dissanayake, T.N. Hapuarachchi, Chathuri Heshani, Chamudi Dilrukshi, Poorni Rukshani, Akila Sanjee, Malsha Rathnayake, Nilusha Warnakula, Rashmi Divyanjali, Sachini Nirupika, Janani Ishmira, Mandeera Sampath, Kaveesha Devmini, Tharushi Illangarathne, Nadee Fernando, Hashini Perera, Nirmani Perera”