Six Sri Lankans obtain golden spots at Paris Olympics

By: Susil Premalal

(Daily Mirror) - The 15-member Paris-bound Sri Lankan Olympic contingent was officially recognised by the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka (NOCSL) during a ceremony held at the NOCSL Auditorium in Colombo.

The opening ceremony of the Olympic Games will take place on July 26. The flag-bearers of Sri Lanka national flag at the opening ceremony will be Dilhani Lekamge and Viren Nettasinghe.

The Sri Lankan contingent comprising of three athletes, three swimmers, eight officials and one chef de mission will participate at the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, France from July 26 to August 11.

The Sri Lankan Team includes athletes competing in badminton, swimming and track and field events with four athletes qualifying through ranking points while two athletes have qualified on wildcard entries.

However, this is the smallest Sri Lankan contingent to participate in an Olympic Games as nine athletes participated at the 2016 Rio Games as well as the 2020 Tokyo Games.

The Sri Lankan competitors who will participate in the Olympics are: Viren Nettasinghe in badminton (Men's Singles), Ganga Senevirathne and Kyle Abeysinghe (swimming Women's 100m backstroke and Men's 100m freestyle).

Meanwhile, Tharushi Karunarathne, Dilhani Lekamge and Aruna Dharshana will represent Sri Lanka in the Women's 800m, Women's javelin throw and Men's 400m events respectively.

Nettasinghe is currently 74th in the world and has qualified for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games to compete in the badminton Men's Singles event.

This achievement also marks him as the youngest individual on the list to secure a direct qualification for this Olympic Games. Senevirathne has earned her place with an achievement of 688 FINA points.

Meanwhile, Abeysinghe qualified with an impressive 776 FINA points. Lekamge stands as the highest-ranked Sri Lankan athlete on the Paris Olympic Games ranking list, ranking 25th among the top 32 qualifiers.

Karunarathne, who clinched a Gold Medal in the 800m at the 19th Asian Games, is ranked 44th among the top 48, qualifiers. Darshana ranked 47th among the top 48 is the only male track athlete participating in the Olympics this year and the first athlete from Sri Lanka to qualify for the Olympic 400m event after 20 years.

The Chef de Mission of the Sri Lanka Team Chandana Liyanage said: "I am thrilled to lead our talented athletes to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. This is a momentous occasion for our nation, showcasing our commitment to excellence in sports on the world stage.”

“Our athletes have trained tirelessly, embodying the spirit of perseverance and dedication. We are confident in their ability to make Sri Lanka proud, inspiring future generations.”

“I extend my heartfelt gratitude to all supporters, coaches, and families who have contributed to this journey. Together, we aim for success and celebrate the unity and strength of Team Sri Lanka."

  Comments - 0

You May Also Like