The Junior National Athletics Championships which was postponed after the completion of just one session resumed yesterday at the Sugathadasa Stadium.
According to the Sri Lanka Athlatics (SLA) Senior Vice President G.L.Perera, this Junior National Championship 2022 was interrupted after the first session of day one on May 9th due to the curfew imposed following a spate of violence in Colombo.
However on the May 9 two Junior National records were established while yesterday most of the heats were held at the Sugathadasa Stadium. The events will be continued on next three days 8,9,10 at the same venue. Keshavi Udeshi of Princess of Wales Moratuwa yesterday set up a new meet record of Javelin throw with a distance of 37.42m.
The Junior National Athletic championship was not held in 2020 and 2021 due to the Covid 19 pandemic and this time it is an ideal opportunity for the junior athletes to show their skills.
The Junior National Championship is the only confirmed track and field event of the year as All Island Schools Championships and the Sir John Tarbat Championships are yet to be confirmed by the Schools Athletic Association.
This Junior National Athletic championship is vital for the juniors ahead of World Youth Athletic Championship (from August 1 to 6) in Cali, Colombia and South Asian Junior Athletic Championship scheduled to be held in Colombo (dates not confirmed).
The junior Athletes like Tharushi Karunaratne, Amesha Hettiarachchi, Sithum Jayasundara already qualified for the Junior World event. The few qualified athletes also take part this Junior Athletic Championship while under 23 event of the boys and girls are key attractions with several National athletes competing.
The junior athletes who have attained the qualifying standard are as follows:
Men – Sithum Jayasundara (Sir John Kothalawala MV, Kurunegala) 400m, Kaveesha Bandara (Royal College, Colombo) 110m hurdles, KMD Darshana (Ambagamuwa MV) 400m hurdles, Hirusha Abeysekera (St. Peter’s College, Colombo) long jump, Rumesh Tharanga (St. Peter’s College, Colombo) javelin, Pasindu Malshan (St. Joseph’s College, Colombo) triple jump
Women – Tharushi Karunaratne (A. Ratnayaka MMV, Walala) 400m and 800m, MHJ Uthara (Holy Cross, Gampaha) 400m, Amesha Hettiarachchi (Vihara Maha Devi Balika, Kandy) 400m hurdles.