Peterite Rumesh Tharanga books a slot for Asian Youth

Asian Youth Athletic Championship 2019

Youth Selection Trial

Selection Trials for the 3rd Asian Youth Championships 2019 (U18) to be held in Hong Kong spurred the 2019 schools athletic season. The event organized by the Athletics Association of Sri Lanka was worked off on the 19th January 2019 at the Sugathadasa Stadium.

The dynamic athlete from St.Peter’s College – Colombo, Rumesh Tharanga stamped his name on the Asian Youth Championship 2018 pool for Sri Lanka. Despite failing to make the qualification mark in the Javelin,  his performance of 51.90m in the Boy’s Discus throw surpassed the qualifying mark of 51.00m. However looking at Rumesh’s previous performances, he established a New Meet Record at the Junior National Championships 2018 with a throw of 55.34m. Looking at the official results of the Asian Youth Championships 2017 Discus throw, Rumesh would stands among the top three medalists.

Shemal Milinda Perera of St. Mary’s College – Chilaw smashed the qualifying standards in the 100m boys heat with a time of 10.80 secs. The sprint events of 100m and 200m draws a fine line between the given qualifying standard released prior to the event. Sadeepa Henderson of Gateway College, Colombo clocked a thundering timing of 12.26 secs in the 100m event falling back with just 0.01 seconds compared to the given qualifying standard. She also manages to hold onto a timing of 25.20 secs in the 200m event. A similar watchout would be Shemal Milinda Perera in the 200m boy’s  who managed to secure a timing of 22.22 secs.

Photo Album – Junior National Trials

The 2000m Steeplechase event ranked among the favourites in Sri Lanka schools athletics with Parami Wasanthi Maristella last year (2018). This year B. M. H. I. Basnayaka from Galgamuwa Maha Vidyalaya – Alawwa clocked a time of 7 mins and 34.57 secs. Basnayaka shows signs of potential improvement in her performance which might be the next hope for Sri Lanka in the same event. The boys event for the 2000m Steeplechase gives quite a close call with GDLA Garusingha of Ch/Senanayake CC – Madampe clocking a time of 6:15.36mins followed by stiff competition with Reshan De Almeida​ of St.Sebastian College – Moratuwa running second with a time of 6:26.69mins.

Two stars in the making to reconsider would be Roshen Dulmin of St. Mary’s College – Chilaw who cut short with a height of 2.00m in the boys High Jump event, and P. P. I. N. Pallegama from Ibbagamuwa Central College with her performance of 1.68m. However she showcased her best performance at the 56th Junior National Athletic Championships 2018 with a New Meet Record at 1.71m standing on the given qualifying height. Hirusha Hashen of St.Peter’s College – Colombo tapered the standard with a distance of 7.11m in the boys Long Jump event.

The decision made by the hosts to bring forward the trials did not payoff favourably for the young athletes. While the coaches complained that the athletes could have performed better if the trials were held a few weeks into the new season, the Athletes themselves were not satisfied by the lack of competition throughout the day. Bearing in mind that 7 athletes could cross the threshold of qualifying, await the official release of the pool of the Sri Lankan representatives for the 3rd Asian Youth Championships 2019.

The selection committee of  the Athletic Assosiation will finalize the squad for the Asian Youth Athletic Championship 2018 by the end of next week. Watch this space for the upto date news from the Asian Youth Athletic Championship 2019.