Picture shows the junior table tennis players at the Sports Ministry auditorium. (front row from left) Thanushi Rodrigo, Chamathsara Fernando, Muthumali Priyadharshani, Ruvini Kannangara, Ridmi Karadarachchi, Hansani Piyumila, Imesha de Silva. (back row from left): Nimesh Ranchagoda, Prasad de Silva, Dishanka Tennakoon, Udaya Ranasinghe, Virunaka Hendehewa, Krishan Wickremaratne and Dinesh Kavishka.

Minister of Tourism and Sports Navin Dissanayake expressed his happiness and gratitude to the junior table tennis players who brought honour to the country by winning 13 medals at the South Asian Junior Table Tennis Chamionship that took place in New Delhi recently. The Minister held a felicitation ceremony to meet the players and presented them with table tennis shoes and track suits to each player.

Speaking of the gold medal won by Udaya Ranasinghe and other medal winners, the Minister said that it was his duty to look after these children and develop their standards as this is a popular game.

“It is important to encourage and motivate them and lay a good foundation for their future. We will provide them with good training and exposure in the future. We will get down a foreign coach and send them overseas to obtain advanced training if necessary,” said Dissanayake.

The Minister also stated that they have a long term plan for their future. It is important to offer correct guidance so that these players can reach higher standards. Sri Lankans are capable of doing well in this sport where physical structure does not come in to play.
These encouraging words from the Sports Minister should certainly boost the determination of these players and endeavour to enhance their standards to higher levels so that they can represent Sri Lanka national team in the future. (TBR)