Air Force fly high
Overall champions at 5th Defence Services Games
Sri Lanka Air Force won the overall championship of the 5th Defence
Services Games 2009 which came to an end on Sunday. The Award Ceremony
was held yesterday at the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium with the Secretary
to the President Lalith Weeratunga as Chief Guest. This yearís games was
organised by Sri Lanka Navy. The organising committee was chaired by
Navy Commander Vice Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe.
R.M.C.S. Rasnayake the outstanding performer for the Air Force
during the 2009 Defence Services Games receiving the Trophy from
the Acting Chief of Defence Staff and Air Force commander Air
Chief Marshal Roshan Gunetilleke.
N.C.D. Priyadharshani receiving the Navy Commanderís Challenge
Trophy for her best achievements from Vice Admiral Thisara
Army Commander Jagath Jayasooriya handing over the Commanderís
Challenge Trophy to Armyís Chaminda Wijekoon for his
performances in the 1500 and 5000m events.
Sri Lanka Air Force men and women won eleven events out of 22 sports
disciplines, while their closest rivals too had the same number of
championship victories. But the organizers had a to award the
championship to the Air Force as they had eleven runner-up positions
compared to Sri Lanka Navyís nine.
The highlight at the games was the new Sri Lanka record established
by Navyís women Triple Jumper N.C.D. Priyadharshani who had a leap of
13.39 meters. She also won the womenís Long Jump to win two gold medals.
Priyadharshani received the challenge, trophy awarded by Navy Commander
for Navyís best Athlete. Chaminda Wijekoon of Sri Lanka Army was
declared as Armyís Best performer and was awarded the Army Commanderís
Challenge Trophy for the most outstanding Army Athlete. Chaminda
Wijekoon to receive this award he performed well to win the 1500m and
the 5000m events at the athletic championships.
Airwoman R.M.C.S. Rasnayake received the trophy on offer for the Air
Forceís Best Performers Challenge Trophy offered by the Commander of the
Sri Lanka Air Force for the Defence Services Games. Rasnayake was the
only competitor to win a triple gold at the games. During the athletic
championships he went on to win the 100, 200 and 400 meters
The other highlight of the 2009 games was made by the Sri Lanka Air
Force when they won the men and women volleyball titles. They have been
dominating in this sport in the past too. Also the Weight lifters from
Air Force created history winning eight out of nine weight categories
competed at the games.
Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunge addressing the gathering
said that all three forces fought a grim battle as one unit to safeguard
the countryís sovereignty. This brought in peace to the country and
today they have got an opportunity to indulge in sporting activities in
a good frame of mind. When engaged in sports the three Forces have
fought on the sporting field to prove their talents in 22 disciplines.
It is only one side wins the other loses. This helps sportsmen and women
to take victory and defeat in a sporting manner.
He further added that when people indulge in sports they build
character and leadership. These are two qualities needed to have a
better and also a healthy society. The Defence Services Games are
contested between three Forces which also unites them.
They indulge in sports according to rules specified for the sport and
it is well looked after by the referees and umpires. The Forcesí
sportsmen and women have to maintain discipline according to rules of
the game. Their behaviour on the sports arena should be an example to
others. During these games I am sure it has been conducted on the
correct guidelines that is the main reason for such a colourful closing
He also said that now the time has come for our servicemen to engage
in sports to bring glory to their respective services and also to
improve further to reach national levels to enter the international
arena to bring honour to their country. Chairman of the Defence Services
Games 2009 organizing committee Navy commander Thisara Samarasinghe
thanked the Air Chief Marshal Roshan Gunetilleke and Commander of the
Sri Lanka Army Jagath Jayasooriya for the unstinted co-operation
extended to make this Games a success.
The closing ceremony was made more colourful with all three services
presenting a colourful cultural pageant.