Sri Lanka junior Table Tennis players are expected to take part at the South Asian Junior Cadet Table Tennis which is scheduled to be held from May 9 to 12 in Maldives.
The Paddlers from the Maldives, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Nepal, Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan would compete in the championship.
The boys and girls under 15 and under 19 age category paddlers already selected from the selection trails conducted by the Table Tennis Association of Sri Lanka (TTASL) and they are training at S.Thomas Gymnasium at Mount Lavinia.
According to the senior official of the TTASL six paddlers (3 boys and 3 girls) of the under 15 category and eight paddlers (4 boys and 4 girls) under 19 category are training with the two coaches Buddika Dikkumbura and Lakshan Harshana, coaches on the tour to Maldives.
Sri Lankan team is scheduled to leave on May 8 but this tour is still not finalised due to financial matter.
Dewmith Weerasena, Janith Batugedera and Diram Harmer are named for the boys under 15 team while Lesanya Sethumadee, Thamadi Kavindya and Imalsha Sewmini are selected for the girls under 15 team.
Meanwhile Chanul Dilshan, Dhanushka Wijesinghe, Thisas Ranchagoda and Hiruna Warusawithana are selected for the boys under 19 team while Bimandi Bandara who was the open women’s champion at the recently concluded All Island open ranking tournament, Ayla Chitty, Maneesha Shalindi and Sanduni Prabuddhika are selected for the girls under 19 team. Most of these paddlers are having previously International experience and they are very keen to take part this South Asian Junior Championship and Sri Lanka have a good chance to win medals.
However team preparation already began but the approval from the Sports Ministry as well as Education Ministry are pending, said one of the parent of a selected player.
Daily News learnt that Sports Ministry has agreed to give part of the team members air fair while few other members are still not having even the air travel fair for this tour. However tour accommodation are not finalised yet. Buddhima Niyarapola is named for the tour Manager while Shamila Manojika de Silva is named for Lady Chaperone cum coach and TTASL secretary Reza Latiff will expected to join the team to take part the South Asian Reginal Federation meetings and conferences.
Altogether 14 players and five officials including two coaches are join this tour. But due to expenses of this tour it is not confirmed our participation, said senior official of the TTASL. This tour is important to gain international exposure for the juniors while having chances to win medals. players are expected to get green-light from the Sport Ministry.