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DateLine Sunday, 6 April 2008





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

A 40-year wait ends.....

Lankan boxer Anurudha Ratnayake qualifies for Olympics

Dian Gomes - energetic president of Amateur Boxing Association of Sri Lanka working round the clock to raise standard of boxing

BOXING: The Amateur Boxing Association (ABA) of Sri Lanka has targeted Rs. 9 million for the year towards development work (Rs. 7 million through sponsorships, Rs. 1 million from the Ministry of Sports and Public Recreation) and another Rs. 1 million from private donors. Already Rs. 4 million sponsorship deal has been struck with A & E Lanka Limited, the thread manufacturers.

The young, energetic President of the ABA, Dian Gomes who was re-elected uncontested at its annual general meeting at the ABA headquarter’s last week, told the Sunday Observer that the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of A & E Lanka Limited, Irfan Thassim, handed over this sponsorship package to the ABA at the annual general meeting. Gomes heads the ABA for the fifth term.

Gomes who is also Group Director of MAS Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, said that his establishment too has given Rs. 2 million, while a further Rs. 500,000/= has been raised through Stretchline.

The ABA have also received three pledges of Rs. 250,000/= each. Also, the monies he (Gomes) receives from lectures at corporate seminars and workshops too will be diverted to the ABA.

He further disclosed that nearly Rs. 3 million is needed for Anurudha Ratnayake’s participation at the Olympic Games in Beijing, China in August.

A Sri Lankan boxer has qualified for the Olympics after a lapse of 40 years. Ratnayake has already undergone three weeks training in Cuba under Sri Lanka’s national coach Rafael Ramiroz, himself a Cuban, in charge of the senior pool based in Pannala.

Ratnayake is now due to leave for the AIBA President’s Cup in Taiwan next month (May) and a further intensive training programme in Thailand in June. Apart from Cuban coach Ramirez, the others “working” on different aspects of Ratnayake’s game is a mentor, psychologist, nutritionist and a cardio vascular specialist.

Gomes further said that a junior side (under 18) is scheduled to participate at the Commonwealth Youth Games in Pune, India in October and a women’s pugilist team is to be sent for the Women’s World Boxing Championships in November.

He said: “The ABA developed boxing in three new regions (Koggala, Thulhiriya and Biyagama) last year (2007) and a regional development structure is to be introduced during this year.

The target market will be young men/women in the region of 15 to 19 years.” He went on to say that regional under-16 and under-18 pools will be picked from the Central Province based in Kandy, North Western Province to be based in Pannala, Western Province based in Panadura and Southern Province to be based in Koggala.

A junior pool of under-16 and under-18 boxers will be picked for a development training programme in Thailand after August this year. “Our goal and development strategy is for a medal at the London Olympics in 2012, and groom the next generation of boxers,” Gomes said.


Gamin Gamata - Presidential Community & Welfare Service
Ceylinco Banyan Villas

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