Lankan netball to focus beyond Asian level | Daily News


 

Lankan netball to focus beyond Asian level

A member of the Sri Lankan champion under 16 netball team receiving her certificate from the netball president Lakshmi Victoria during the  felicitation ceremony held at the Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel recently. Sri Lankan junior head coach Amalka Gunatilleka is also in the picture.

A member of the Sri Lankan champion under 16 netball team receiving her certificate from the netball president Lakshmi Victoria during the  felicitation ceremony held at the Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel recently. Sri Lankan junior head coach Amalka Gunatilleka is also in the picture.

Sri Lanka Netball Federation officials headed by Lakshmi Victoria are planning to give youth players a break. We are ready to focus on youth players and coaches and will start our development programmes in the outstation areas said Netball Chief Victoria.

Most of the affiliated clubs have already promised to give their support to the Federation and we hope to go ahead with these development programmes. The officials are going to start with their programmes on September 12 and the first step is to go to Kegalle and Kandy.

We have already invited school coaches for these development programmes. The first one will be at Kegalle and the same day on the 12th evening we are going to conduct next programme at Digana for the school coaches from Kandy, Nuwara Eliya and Matale. The senior consultant coach Hyacinth Wijesinghe is giving good support to make these coaching development programmes a success.

The Netball Federation felicitated Sri Lanka under 16 team led by Nethmi Wijenayake which won the South Asian under 16 championships held in Kathmandu, Nepal last year at a simple ceremony at the Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel recently.

The head coach of the team Amalka Gunatilleka and other officials who went on the Nepal tour were welcomed by the Netball officials. The team members received special replicas and certificates on this occasion.

Sri Lankan under 16 Netball team emerged champions at the inaugural South Asian Championship by defeating India comfortably 48-28 in the final. Sri Lankan players dominated the tournament from the beginning and they performed well throughout the tournament to clinch the inaugural title.

This is a good start for the Sri Lankan juniors and we have to encourage them with this type of felicitation added a senior official of the Netball Federation. The officials and coaches were also felicitated on this occasion.

The Netball Federation has already appointed development coaches apart from the Senior and Junior coaches to take the game to a higher level They also focused on North and Eastern Provinces and their affiliated clubs have already promised to give their support to the Federation. Next year there are Junior International tournaments and Sri Lankans have to prepare for these events and we have to find more talented players from the outstations and Netball Chief Victoria has decided to give preference for youngsters This is a good move for this sport and senior players have started their training under the head coach Somitha de Alwis and assistant coach P.D Prasadi.

“There is no doubt that Sri Lanka is the number one netball team in Asia. But when we take part in the World Cup we end up as the last team on most occasions. Sri Lanka also failed to make an impact at the Commonwealth Games. The reason is that the best netball players are in action in these events making it difficult for Sri Lanka and other Asian countries to make an impression. We should focus on closing the gap when we play matches in the World Cup or Commonwealth Games,” said National Head coach Somitha de Alwis. She further added the standard of netball has not improved just because Sri Lanka has won the Asian title several times. There is no change in their style of play. Therefore, we cannot win international events other than the Asian tournament and this is a good point to go forward from the Asian level.

Meanwhile Netball Federation is looking to build up a strong relationship with the Schools Federation. The players start their career from the schools and New Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa also has a plan to develop sports from the school level. We also wanted to pay more attention to the school players said Netball Chief Lakshmi Victoria.


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