A senior official of SLB said “The Ministry of Sports’ High-Performance Unit has been a great impetus in this direction. It has set an ambitious target for all local athletes, SLB has been working on the same wavelength for quite a while.
The responsibility placed on The Ministry of Sports’ High-Performance Unit has been a great impetus in this direction. National Sports Federations (NSF) decision to focus on international status and medal prospects is a wise decision taken by Sri Lanka Badminton (SLB).
The experienced shuttler three times Olympian Niluka Karunaratne made considerable efforts at the highest level such as Olympics , Commonwealth Games and Asian Games but other National shuttlers have not had the opportunity to make their presence felt.SLB has been working on the same wavelength for quite while and they wanted to see more Olympians from this sport.
Going back to Sri Lankan Badminton history Niroshan Wijekoon ,Niluka Karunaratne represented Olympics from men’s section while Thilini Jayasinghe is the only Women’s shuttler to represent Olympics (back to back two times).
The key objective is to make these shuttlers to represent Asian, Commonwealth and Olympics and High Performance Unit of the Sports Ministry has already started to evaluate these programme progress.
Dinuka Karunaratne the younger brother of Niluka with Buwaneka Gunathileka and Sachin Dias the most successful men’s shuttle pair have many achievements at the International level also next in line in the men’s section while Thilini Hendahewa and Kavindi Sirimmanne the best women’s double pair with International experience also next in line .In addition promising players Viren Nettasinghe ,Dumindu Abeywickrama and Ashini Fernando are also in this elite squad of eleven shuttlers .The present SLB headed by Rohan de Silva is working hard to produce shuttlers to bring honour to Sri Lanka.
The elite squad shuttlers who are training at present
Men’s Dinuka Karunaratne, Sachin Dias, Buwaneka Gunetileke, Ranthushka Karunatilake, Rasindu Hendahewa, Viren Nettasinghe and Dumindu Abeywickrama
Women’s Thilini Hendahewa, Kavidi Sirimanna, Dilmi Dias and Ashini Fernando