Nilani and Samantha to Asian Cross Country Championship


Nilani Ratnayake and Samantha Pushpakumara will represent Sri Lanka at the Biennial Asian Cross-Country Championship which will be held Guiyang China on the 15th of March.

Organized by the Asian Athletic Association, the competition was first held in Fukuoka, Japan in 1991.  The competition has been held biennially since and will hold the 18th edition this year in China. Nilani and Samantha earned qualification for the championship at the recently concluded National Cross-country Championship which was held at the Nuwara Eliya Golf Course on the 18th February.

Nilani & Samantha make a statement amidst some heartache

The first competition of the 44th National Sports festival..

Despite not being allowed to represent their respective province and be a part of the National Sports festival due to both not being present in the country at the time registrations closed as they were in Jakarta, Indonesia participating in the 18th Asian Games Invitational competition, Nilani and Samantha dealt a severe blow to the absurd bureaucracy as they both managed to finish ahead of the rest of the competition to qualify for the Asian cross-country championship as well as the South Asian cross-country championship.

සුන්දරත්වයෙන් සැඟවිය නොහැකි අසුන්දර මතකය

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Japan, China and Iran have been the most successful teams in the competition historically but since 2005, Bahrain and Qatar have dominated the competition led by several East-African born athletes who have changed their alliance to the oil rich middle eastern states. Sri Lanka’s best performance in the competition was back in 2001 where the Men’s team was adjudged the overall winners of the team competition.