Sri Lanka celebrates 45 years in World Military Sports | Page 2 | Sunday Observer

Sri Lanka celebrates 45 years in World Military Sports

File photo! Winners at the Military World Golf Championship 2017 held in Sri Lanka receive their trophies from Air Marshal Kapila Jayampathy, Commander of the Air Force
File photo! Winners at the Military World Golf Championship 2017 held in Sri Lanka receive their trophies from Air Marshal Kapila Jayampathy, Commander of the Air Force

The International Military Sports Council (CISM) which was founded on February 18, 1948, in Nice, France, is one of the largest multi-disciplinary organizations in the world.

CISM organizes various sporting events for the armed forces of its 136 member countries and is one of the global sports organizations in which the largest number of disciplines is represented.

Soldiers, who may have previously met on the battlefield, now meet in friendship on the playing field with the motto ‘Friendship through Sports’. This is in accordance with the philosophy and the ideals which were set in CISM’s mission statement in 1998, signed by all the member countries.

CISM annually organizes over 20 Military World Championships of different sports in which all member nations can take part. It also organizes continental and regional competitions and every four years the Military World Games and Winter Games.

In 2003, Sri Lanka secured its first medal at the Military World Championships. During the 15th World Military Taekwondo Championship held in August 2003 in Croatia, Lance Corporal Tharaka Madihahewa won the Bronze medal at the under 84 kg weight category.

The active participation of the Sri Lankan military in Military World Games commenced in 2007 at its fourth edition held in Hyderabad, India. A 45-member delegation represented Sri Lanka in the event competing in parachuting, sailing, judo, boxing, shooting, wrestling and athletics. At the fifth Military World Games held in July 2011 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the Sri Lanka men’s beach volleyball team comprising Seamen Mahesh Perera and Wasantha Ratnapala became the giant killers when they beat the more fancied USA team 2-1 to reach the semi-finals.

The 4X400m women’s relay quartet of Sri Lanka comprising Corporal Menaka Wickramasinghe, Pilot Officer Chandrika Subashini Rasnayake, Private SVA Kusumawathie and Private Champika Dilrukshi won the Bronze medal to became the first medal winners at the Military World Games for Sri Lanka.

The Sri Lankan men’s 100m relay team comprising Private ALM Ashraf, Corporal ARM Rajaskhan, Private MVS de Silva and Private AMYP Abeykoon secured the Bronze medal at the sixth Military World Games held in October 2015 in Mungyeong, Korea.

The following year, the Sri Lanka indoor volleyball team scored an upset win against the formidable China team at the 35th International Men’s Military Volleyball Championship held in Teheran, Iran. Sri Lanka finished in fourth place having gone down in the semi-finals.

Sri Lanka became a member of this prestigious sports body in 1974 and during the 40 years of relationship with CISM, it has actively contributed to the course of CISM through a number of initiatives.

Sri Lanka’s best contribution to CISM was recorded in 2017 when the Sri Lanka Defence Services combined to organize the 11th International Military Golf Championship from November 12 to 19, 2017 at the picturesque Eagles’ Golf Links in China Bay, Trincomalee which belongs to the Air Force.

More than 125 men and women golfers representing 12 countries participated at this historic event which showcased its professionalism and organizing abilities to the rest of the world. In line with the concept of Military World Games, Sri Lanka organizes the Defence Services Games one of the biggest sporting events in the country.

 

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