NOC President Suresh Subramaniam (second from left) handing over a special memento to the FINA President Dr. Husain Al-Musallam at the NOC’s Hemasiri Fernando Auditorium. The Secretary of NOC Maxwell de Silva and Treasurer Gamini Jayasinghe are also present.
The FINA world swimming body’s President, Dr. Husain Al-Musallam who came to Sri Lanka for a short visit promised to give his fullest support to uplift the Sri Lanka Aquatic Sports. This is good news for Sri Lanka swimmers. Captain Husain Al Musallam who also the Kuwait President of FINA and Director General of Olympic Council of Asia arrived in Sri Lanka on a short visit on Friday, on the invitation of the President of the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka Suresh Subramaniam.
The FINA President was very keen to support Sri Lankan Aquatic sports. He agreed to give three leading International swimming coaches to uplift the aquatic sport in Sri Lanka. The American coach for swimming, Chinese coach for diving and Bulgarian coach for Water Polo and their services will give much needed assistance for local swimmers.
At the discussions held with the NOC of Sri Lanka we agreed to offer two scholarships to athletes (one boy and a girl) to train and study for four years in Budapest,” said FINA President Al Musallam.
In addition as a request of Sri Lanka Aquatic Sports Union (SLASU) the President of FINA is expected to give financial assistance through FINA to build a new Gymnasium for the divers. He also expected to give equipments for this Gymnasium. The FINA President further added that the gymnasium has to be constructed on land which should belong to the SLASU.
This is the first time FINA high profile official arrived in Sri Lanka and all credit should go the NOC to arrange this FINA President’s visit.
There was a misconception that the Sri Lanka Aquatic Sports Union (SLASU) was banned by FINA the world governing body for swimming some time ago. However the President of FINA clearly explained about this issue.
“First of all, we did not ban the swimming association. Their voting is normal. But there is an issue. It’s related to so many things. Related to the law, constitution and election. But it is not banned. We don’t suspend federations,” added FINA President.
The SLASU was not banned and the reason why Sri Lankan swimmers were allowed to participate in international meets. The FINA President and Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa had a very successful discussion during this visit which helped to solve the matter of swimming administration very soon.