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MBA to conduct International Masters cager Tourney in June

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President of Masters Basketball Association Gayath Jayasinghe speaking at the press briefing flanked by Secretary Basil Silva (on left) and Treasurer Clifford Surendran. Picture by Saliya Rupasinghe

Gayath Jayasinghe was re-elected as the President of the Masters Basketball Association (MBA) for the fourth consecutive occasion at their Annual General Meeting held recently in Colombo.

Gayath Jayasinghe had a clear mandate and was chosen to the top post uncontested to serve another year after completing a successful three year tenure. He had contributed immensely towards boosting the game while making valiant efforts to elevate the standard of the game to next level in the country. Being a former player who donned the National Jersey, Gayath is a visionary leader who wants to see his favourite game thrive which at present is struggling without a permanent shelter to conduct their practices for national teams with the stipulated standards. “I am glad to be reelected once again and me and my team will continue with the good work. Even though this segment of the competition is for people who are retired from the top competition levels, our aim is to get the men and women to spare their time to keep them fitter and healthier. In this modern world people are stressed over their family and business commitments neglecting their health. But with our competition’s it will enable them to refocus on the game and relax from their stressed life. The other aspect is that they will be able to mingle with their past friends and strengthen their relationship further” said Gayath Jayasinghe.

The MBA was formed 25-years back with an intention of offering the players over 35 years and above to restart playing the game.They were quite successful in conducting a tournamnet involving unisex players last year under tough times with the Covid-19 pandemic was in tandem. “We were able to conduct a tournament for the Masters over 35 years under tough conditions due to Covid-19 pandemic which ultimately was a successful one. I am thankful to Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa for granting us the greenlight and assisting us to get the necessary approval to conduct that tournament. Moreover, we have drawn up several plans to host another tournament this year too.” Gayath further added.

The MBA in their plans are to host a 3×3 tournament involving the masters from eight elite countries. This format of playing which is very popular in the world will attract teams from U.S.A., Australia, Philippines, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Maldives and Bangladssh with the host Sri Lanka. This tournament which will be tagged as “International Street Ball Championship” to be held in June this year in Colombo and Kandy. Around 120 to 200 international players will be seen in action with a total of 500 players are likely to play in this tournament. The first leg will be played in Kandy for one and half week and then the selected teams will appear in Colombo for the second leg where age category will range from 33 to 55 years.The main idea behind this tournament is to get the top players to play which will enable our local players playing the game to gain the much needed exposure.Pallekele and Bogambara stadiums will be the venues in Kandy while Race Course and Galle Face green will be utilised as venues in Colombo.Coincide with this the MBA expect the tourism to boom and generate an inflow of foreign currency to boost the economy.

Meanwhile, Gayath is awaiting for a land to be allocated to put up an ultra modern Basketball stadium on par with International standards with a dormitory, auditorium and other facilities for players.He has managed to gain a sponsor for this project which is estimated for 1.5 million US dollars. This is to be constructed with a view of developing skills of the players engaged in the sport.”” concluded Gayath.

The office bearers – President – Gayath Jayasinghe, Secretary – Basil Silva, Treasurer- Clifford Surendran, Asst Secretary – Gayan Meedeniya, Asst Treasurer – Chamath Danawansa, Senior Vice President – Brawin Fernando, Vice Presidents – Vajeera Ramanayake, Prasanna Brahmanage , T M Amath, Committee Members – Chaminda De Alwis, Clifurd Greig, Sameera Fernando, Asanka Perera and Anuja Subashini.

Friday, April 1, 2022 – 01:00

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