New netball coach brings high hopes | Sunday Observer

New netball coach brings high hopes

Netball Federation president Lakshmi Victoria (right) congratulates the newly appointed National head coach Somitha de Alwis at the sports Ministry
Netball Federation president Lakshmi Victoria (right) congratulates the newly appointed National head coach Somitha de Alwis at the sports Ministry

New national netball coach Somitha de Alwis has expressed her desire to uplift the sport further by preparing the team for the Asian Indoor Games scheduled to be held in May 2021 in Bangkok.

Sri Lanka are the current Asian champions and stand a good chance to win the gold medal at the Indoor Games and the new coach has a big responsibility to offer her best services.

“I am honoured to be appointed to this top post for the second time and want to develop it with high expectations,” said De Alwis.

She is no stranger to netball as she was a regular member of the Sri Lanka team from 1995 to 2005. She was head coach of the national team which took part in the Asian Junior Netball Championship held in India in 2010 and has the distinction of participating in three netball World Cups as a player, vice-captain and captain of the Sri Lanka team (1995, 1999 and 2003).

She was vice-captain of the national team during the 1999 World Cup held in Christchurch, New Zealand and captain of the side during the 2003 World Cup held in Jamaica. She was a member of the team in 1995 when Sri Lanka played in the 1995 World Cup in England and was also vice-captain of the Sri Lanka team which took part in the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

“My responsibility is to build up the team for future international tournaments. Pool practices were halted due to the Covid 19 pandemic and now they are training at home under the supervision of acting coach PD Prasadi via on line. I will have to resume their training very soon,” said De Alwis.

Her entry as the new Sri Lanka coach has also given high hopes to her employer who is optimistic the goods will be delivered.

“Prasadi and Somitha are ready to build up the team to a high standard once again and we have to give them the maximum support in this effort,” said Lakshmi Victoria the president of the Netball Federation of Sri Lanka.

A product of the Dharmaloka College Kelaniya, De Alwis later joined to Hatton National Bank (HNB) where she played as well as coached the team to clinch the National championships 12 years in a row.

Her appointment as coach is only for one year but the Federation is looking forward to extend her services until the next Asian Championships.

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