CICT and CMCF donate wheelchairs to three ITF-ranked tennis players | Daily News


 

CICT and CMCF donate wheelchairs to three ITF-ranked tennis players

CICT General Manager – Commercial and Marketing Ms Catriona Jayasundara presents one of the wheelchairs to a recipient
CICT General Manager – Commercial and Marketing Ms Catriona Jayasundara presents one of the wheelchairs to a recipient

The aspirations of three of Sri Lanka’s internationally-ranked wheelchair tennis players received a further boost with a donation of custom-made wheelchairs by Colombo International Container Terminals (CICT), a longstanding benefactor of the sport, and its parent company, China Merchants Group (CMG).

Part of CICT’s continuing support to the Wheelchair Tennis Programme of the Sri Lanka Tennis Association (SLTA), the three professional grade, titanium wheelchairs were presented to Lance-Bombardier D. S. R. Dharmasena (ITF Rank 62), Corporal Dissanayake Gamini (ITF Rank 82) and Corporal Suresh Ranaweera (ITF Rank 101) who have brought recognition to Sri Lanka at the international level. All veterans of the Sri Lanka Army, these sportsmen are amputees and differently-abled due to injuries sustained in the conflict in the North.

The donation of these wheelchairs, costing US$ 9000 (approximately Rs 1.6 million at current rates) took place recently at the Sri Lanka Tennis Association.

The funds for the donation were channelled through the China Merchants Charitable Foundation (CMCF), China Merchants Group’s CSR arm.

Commenting on the donation, CICT CEO Jack Huang said: “At CICT we have always believed in contributing generously to worthy causes in Sri Lanka, and the development of wheelchair tennis is one of our on-going commitments. Our support to the SLTA has not only enriched the lives of differently-abled sportsmen and women, it has enabled them to bring glory to themselves and the country at international tournaments.” CMCF and CICT have together donated Rs 30 million to the SLTA’s Wheelchair Tennis Programme between 2015 and 2019, becoming the main sponsor for wheelchair tennis in the country. This support has enabled Sri Lankan players to participate in many international tournaments, elevating the country to be ranked among the top 40 countries that play wheelchair tennis.

In 2016, CICT also funded the refurbishment of two international standard hard surface courts at the SLTA to bolster the sport in the country.

The Wheelchair Tennis Programme was initiated in Sri Lanka in 2003 as a rehabilitation programme for disabled soldiers. Currently, Sri Lanka has 13 wheelchair tennis players who have secured international rankings.

 


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