Competing among the best in the world, the Sri Lankan junior athletes failed to win a medal but held their heads high after putting up an incredible show at the IAAF World U20 Championship in Finland a couple of days ago.
Aruna Dharshana Men’s 400M Semis
Aruna Dharshana, not at his best, crashed out of the Men’s 400M race after finishing 5th in the semifinals at 46.75s. Jonathan Sacoor of Belgium finished as the fastest qualifier in 45.72s, 0.07s lesser than Dharshana’s personal best. Had Dharshana hit his individual best, he would have had a good chance in the finals.
The conditions in Tampere may have influenced Dharshana who wore a thermal jacket under his skinny in the heats.
Men’s 4x400M Relay Finals
Meanwhile, the Men’s 4x400M relay team (Pasindu Kodikara, Pabasara Niku, Ravishka Indrajith and Aruna Darshana) made it to the finals as one of the fastest losers from the heats. They finished the heats in 03:08.88s behind France and USA.
In the finals, Sri Lanka finished 8th in 03:09.38s only behind Australia, Germany, Belgium, France, Great Britain, USA, and Italy. The Americans, after an early setback finished behind the Junior World Champions, Italy.
What next for Sri Lanka?
Sri Lanka may have lost out on a medal but they were the only Asian country in the finals. Dharshana and co have a long way to go and with the right training, they are more than capable of making it to the top 3 in the near future. Furthermore, the facilities in America and Europe are much more advanced than in Sri Lanka.
It’s over to the Sports Ministry and the Athletic Association to either arrange overseas training or get the required technology down to Sri Lanka. Nevertheless, the climatic conditions may also have an effect on an athlete’s performance and in such cases, foreign training is absolutely essential.
/ 2 years ago
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