Three sports bodies seek Namal’s intervention | Daily News


Three sports bodies seek Namal’s intervention

The sports loving public are in quandary over the activities of three sports bodies, namely Basketball, Carrom and Hockey, and are seeking Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa’s intervention to reactivate these games to achieve their past glory.

These three sports, which at one time stole the limelight, have ceased conducting their annual activities due to reasons known only to them.

Hockey, which Sri Lanka was dominating in the 80’s and 90’s in the region, has perished completely and has become a game like a ‘headless chicken’. The yesteryear players who donned the jersey both domestically and internationally have been sidelined due to the conduct of the administration, which they refer to as a one-man show.

The last decade has shown a barren work sheet with regard to the domestic competitions, but as per the hockey loving fraternity, including the stakeholders, the governing officials were much more interested in clinging to their positions and travelling on overseas tours rather than executing a clear plan for the development of the game and conducting tournaments.

Adding salt to the wound, it is also very sad to state that most of the members serving in this Federation have not even touched a hockey stick, but brag about their exploits at the highest level.

The stakeholders and former players cry out that the committees which came to power used the support of fabricated associations in some districts which never played the game, but were registered with the sole intention of obtaining their votes and winning elections.

Due to non-execution of a proper plan, sponsors were reluctant to support the game, except a few sports loving individuals who came to the rescue and sent a couple of teams abroad to participate in tournaments, for which they have also taxed the players heavily, which is a very unfair situation.

There are three major annual tournaments listed in the Hockey Calendar which were traditionally played to sustain the boys and girls at junior and senior levels. The Federation was able to conduct only one segment per year omitting others.

Furthermore, the two main Astro turfs in Colombo and Matale are not conducive to play the game, and these officials have failed to make an effort to find alternative solutions to conduct the game. As a result, there are a few court cases filed in tandem by the stakeholders seeking justice during the last five years.

The stakeholders further stated that some officials who represent the Police Department used their influence to remain in power without sharing it with others.

Meanwhile, the Carrom Federation too has become the talk of the town along with Basketball. The internal conflicts and hunger for power have forced these Federations to be inactive.

Through reliable sources it is learnt that the Basketball Federation has only recently finalized its nominations (last Tuesday), and will hold their Annual General Meeting at the end of this month.

However, certain factions are trying to create fabricated stories and upset the applecart.

Nevertheless, all these three Federations have failed to live up to expectations and get the blessings of their respective stakeholders and former players. Hence, they seek the Sports Minister’s intervention to revamp and bolster the sports to regain their lost glory.

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