By Susil Premalal
Former Sri Lanka cricket captain Mahela Jayawardene has been appointed Chairman of the National Sports Counci (NSC) by the new Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs Namal Rajapaksa.
The new Sports Council is made up of experienced professionals in a variety of disciplines who have consistently contributed to the rebuilding and revival of a strong sports culture in Sri Lanka and internationally throughout their careers.
The 14 members of the NSC appointed at the invitation of the young minister were present at its inaugural meeting today evening at the Sports Ministry office in Reid Avenue.
The newly appointed NSC which comprises a mix of former national stars such as cricket legend Kumar Sangakkara, swimming great Julian Bolling, double international Kasthuri Wilson and motor racing ace Dilantha Malagamuwa, also comprises top professionals from the corporate world.
Among the functions of the NSC is to advise the Minister on the improving the standard of sports and how to upgrade related infrastructure.
“Formulation of a new Sports Act and a National Sports Policy will be the top priority of the National Sports Council,” said Minister Namal Rajapaksa, a former Sri Lanka rugby captain. “Preparation of plans to achieve targets, development of infrastructure in schools, establishment of national pools, collaboration with the Ministry of Education to formulate a school sports development plan, create an environment conducive to safeguarding the purity and transparency of sports, and develop programs to build a sports economy through new trends and new disciplines such as e-sports is one of the responsibilities of the National Sports Council.”
The National Sports Council is as follows: Mahela Jayawardene (Chairman), Kumar Sangakkara, Shavendra Silva, Rovena Samarasinghe, Sanjeewa Wickremanayake, Julian Bolling, Yashwant Muttettuwegama, Supun Weerasinghe, Kasthuri Wilson, Ruwan Keragala, Rajitha Ampemohotti, Rohan Fernando, Dilantha Malagamuwa and Amal Edirisuriya.