Veteran athlete Carl Fernando does Sri Lanka proud | Daily News


Veteran athlete Carl Fernando does Sri Lanka proud

Carl Fernando being felicitated by the Secretary of the Sports Ministry. (Picture by Dilwin Mendis, Moratuwa Sports  Special Correspondent)
Carl Fernando being felicitated by the Secretary of the Sports Ministry. (Picture by Dilwin Mendis, Moratuwa Sports Special Correspondent)

76 year old former Prince of Wales’ College, Ceylon Government Railways, Ace Athletic Club and Sri Lanka Masters Athlete Weerawarna Jayasuriyathotage Carl Quintus Fernando commenced his schooling at Holy Emmanuel Church, Rawatawatte, Moratuwa and later joined Prince of Wales’ College from Grade 4 and from his younger days his forte was Athletics and he was a cricket lover too. After leaving school in 1964 he joined Sachithananda Schockman Wijeratne and Company as an Accounts Clerk and served for two years and after passing the Station Master’s Exam he joined the Ceylon Railway Department in 1967.

Whilst at school he was a short distance runner and took part in school Athletic Meets but could not gain success. When he was under 19 he took up to long distance events i.e 880 Yards, one Mile, Marathon

Carl Fernando with his 

and cross country events. In his last year in the under 19 he came second to Cambrian Public Schools Athlete Shanthi de S. Jayaratne and in the next year in the Open Events he came first in the 880 and 1500 Yards. During this period there were fine long distance runners at the College such as Godfrey de Silva, L. L. Dougals Silva and Dulman Dharmawijaya. He was a house captain and in under 19 4x440 Yards Relay his team won the first place. In his last year he represented the Western Province and clocked 2 minutes 7 seconds in the 880 Yards and lost to Walter Wickramasinghe of Taxila Central. Though he could not perform well during his school career he never gave up and in the mean time former Sebastianite Athlete Denzil Fernando encouraged him to join Ace Athletic Club in 1963. After joining them he participated in Dual Meets along with Stalwarts like Senaka Wijenayaka. R.Jk Karunananda, S. L. B. Rosa, M. R. Wijebandara and Khan Brothers A. S. M. and A. L. M. to mention a few and his pet event was 880 yards

In the year 2000 he participated in the Sri Lanka Masters and did hard practices at De Soysa Stadium and took part in the Sri Lanka Masters in the 55-60 years age group and his events were 400, 800 and 1500 metres and his first meet in Kandy he came third in the 400 metres In the age groups of 60-65 and 65-70 he participated in the meets held at Kegalle, Gampaha, Matara, Kandy, Colombo and Bandaragama and won his events and in the 70/75 age group he started the Steeple Chase where the competitors had to do Five Water Jumps and 18 Barriers During the year 2019 he won 10 Golds, 5 Silver and 2 Bronzes and in January 2020 he won a gold in 5000 metres and won two golds and one Silver at Sri Lanka Masters Athletic Meet held at Sugathadasa Stadium, Colombo. The meets which were to be held at Bandaragama and Colombo was postponed due to the prevailing situation in the country and it is prohibited to do practices too.

In 2004 he represented the country in the Masters International Meet in Nehru Stadium Chennai, India and won a Bronze in 1500 event.

In 2010 representing the country in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, Sri Lanka won 4 x 400 Meters Relay and he was a member of the team and won a Gold and in the 800 and 5000 metres he won two Bronze Medals. During his Athletic career so far he has won more than 200 medals from time to time.

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