The Sri Lanka Junior badminton contingent performed remarkably well at the South Asian U21 Badminton Championship, held in Kathmandu Nepal, bringing home 2 Silver and 3 Bronze medals.
Sri Lanka, Nepal, Maldives, India and Bangladesh took part in the tournament with 8 Junior shuttlers representing Sri Lanka. These players are fresh off their tour to the World Junior Badminton Tournament and has performed valiantly from the experience.
Ranthushka Sasindu, Chirath Illeperuma, Chamath Dias, Duminda Abeywickrama, Viren Nettasinghe, Dilmi Dias, Hasini Ambalangodage, Hasara Wijeratna made up the Lankan team while Dhanushka Nilanga and K.G Upendra toured as Coach and Manager of the team respectively.
The team won a Bronze medal in the Mixed team event while the remaining silverware came in the individual events. Ranthushka Sansidu was the key shuttler for Sri Lanka, winning two silver medals in his individual attempts.
Sasindu, who was recently crowned the Men’s National Runner-up, reached the final of both the Men’s Singles and mixed doubles but unfortunately lost both matches to finish with 2 Silver medals.
He lost to Priyanshu Rajawat after a hard fought three setter in the Men’s singles; Sasindu won the first set 21/16 and took a comfortable lead. However, the Indian retaliated strong with a 21/17 and 21/16 in the next two to claim Gold.
He later partnered Dilmi Dias to win his second Silver medal at the tournament in the Mixed Doubles category. Their biggest victory came against Indian pair Vishnuwardan Goud and Tanisha Crasto in straight sets, 21/10 and 21/16 as they went on to claim second place.
Hasini Ambalangodage who won the gold medal at the mixed International event at the Youth Olympic Games in Argentina, reached the Semifinals of the women’s singles event and eventually managed a bronze medal in the event.
Ambalangodage lost to Purva Burve in a three setter, 21/19, 9/21,21/10. The Indian went on to win the Women’s Singles category.
Chirath Illeperuma partnered with Chamath Dias to win the men’s doubles bronze medal, with an unfortunate loss in the semifinals. Their efforts saw a loss in a three-setter, 21/19, 9/21, 21/10.