Irangani to contest Asian Masters athletics | Sunday Observer

Irangani to contest Asian Masters athletics

Irangani Karunaratne
Irangani Karunaratne

Irangani Karunaratne is a veteran athlete who has brought glory and honour to Sri Lanka from almost all International Masters athletic meets she participated in. She won gold medals in her two pet events the long jump and the triple jump and even in the 100m and 200m and relay events whenever she participated.

However, she has been silent about her achievements for some time now. She has not gone after the media to obtain the publicity she deserves too. On the other hand, she was also deprived from participating in international meets from 2014 up to this year due to a faction that broke off from the Sri Lanka Masters Athletics and formed another body called Masters Athletics Sri Lanka. Those who participated in meets conducted by Sri Lanka Masters Athletics were not recognized for selection to represent Sri Lanka at Asian Masters meets.

Anyway, feelings have changed and now all those who qualify to participate in Asian Masters meets will be allowed to proceed. She has now qualified to participate in the Asian Masters meet to be held in Kuching, East Malaysia in December and as always she is determined to bring more gold medals to Sri Lanka. Winning has become a habit and Irangani has never failed to bring at least two gold medals in her pet events from all the international meets that she has been participating in since her return to athletics in 2000.

On her return she won two gold medals in the 100 and 200m races and three gold medals in 2001 from meets in the Asian region. She won six gold medals including two from two relay events at the Asian meet in 2008. Then she won four gold medals in 2010 including two from relay events.

More remarkable is that she has established new records in the two jump events.

Then she won two silver and a bronze medal from a meet held in Chinese Taipei in 2012. She has also won a silver medal in the triple jump event in a meet held in Japan in 2014.

This year alone she has won four gold medals in an international meet held in Thailand in March. She also won four gold medals at a meet held in Brunei this year.

Irangani took part in three meets held in Sri Lanka this year and won ten Gold and two Silver medals which automatically paved the way for her selection to participate in the Masters athletic meet in December.

She has aged a bit and now participates in the 70 to 75 years age category, yet she looks much fitter and ready to bring more glory to her mother land.. To make it possible she will need a sponsor who will help her make the trip and fulfill her ambitions.

Irangani claims that she obtained all this strength by drinking her mother’s milk for five long years. She is a mother of two children who are now having families of their own.

She returned to athletics after a lapse of 25 years after her daughter was given in marriage. She lives in Raddoluwagama in Seeduwa and practices daily in a ground in the vicinity. She used to do all this without a coach who could have given her better guidance.