Stage set for Li Ning Sri Lanka Challenge; Netthasinghe to face Mannepalli in opener

Li Ning Sri Lanka Challenge International Badminton Tournament 2024

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The Li Ning Sri Lanka Challenge International Badminton Tournament is set to commence on Monday, February 5 at the Dadella Sports Complex in Galle.

This prestigious tournament which promises to be a showcase of badminton excellence, highlighting both international and local talents, marks the first international badminton tournament in Sri Lanka in nine years. Elite shuttlers from 20 nations will be in action.

In the men’s singles category, Sri Lanka’s rising star Viren Nettasinghe is seeded fourth, following the top and bottom seed spots held by India’s M. Manjunath and S. Subramaniam, respectively.

Sri Lankan badminton enthusiasts can look forward to seeing national talents like Buwaneka Goonethilleka, Ashinsa Herath, Dumindu Abeywickrama, and Rashindu Hendahewa, in the men’s event, while the national champion Ranitma Liyanage will be in action in the women’s singles main round.

Nettasinghe, Sri Lanka’s highest-ranked player (76) will meet India’s Tharun Mannepalli in the Round of 64, while the National champion Goonethilleka will take on a qualifier. Abeywickrama will meet India’s PranayKatta, while Herath will face Malaysia’s TehJin Hong. Hendahewa will be up against a qualifier. On the women’s side, Liyanage is also set to meet a qualifier.

The tournament, sanctioned by both the Badminton World Federation and Badminton Asia, will be inaugurated by Sri Lanka Badminton President Rohan de Silva. The grand opening is scheduled for Monday, with the final matches slated for February 11, beginning at 10:00 am.

The closing ceremony will be graced by Sports Minister Harin Fernando, where the victors will be awarded a total cash prize of $15,000. The tournament encompasses various categories, including Open Men’s and Women’s Singles and Doubles, as well as Mixed Doubles. The qualifiers for the main tournament also feature these categories.

The event will be broadcast live on Dialog Papare TV and through the Papare social media network. Notable sponsors for this event include Li Ning, Mobil, GAC, 3M, McFoil, and the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, with American Water being the official drinking water sponsor.