Sri Lanka tennis in danger of losing office and 17 courts | Sunday Observer

Sri Lanka tennis in danger of losing office and 17 courts

13 September, 2020

The land leased out to the Sri Lanka Tennis Association (SLTA) for its headquarters and courts at Sir Marcus Fernando Mawatha, Colombo 7 is under threat of being reclaimed by the Colombo Municipal Council, the Sunday Observer learns.

The land was leased out on a tax basis for a few decades.

The SLTA headquarters is spread over nearly five acres of land which has a very high value and the CMC had attempted to take it back on a few previous occasions and failed.

Tennis was introduced to Sri Lanka over a hundred years ago by the Englishmen and established as an Association in 1915. It was first situated in Nuwara Eliya and then shifted to the present Sir Marcus Fernando Mawatha in Colombo 7.

A tennis official who did not want his identity revealed for obvious reasons said that big time businessmen are trying to strike a deal with the CMC to take over the land again.

“One deputy Mayor had tried to even demolish our premises several times but could not do so as we had a lease. ”This is not a fair and legitimate attempt. We will discuss this matter with the Sports Minister and reach a solution,” he said.

The CMC had also decided to increase the monthly rental of the venue from Rs.130,000 to more than double the amount..

“We maintain more than 17 courts here and to make each new court it cost us a minimum Rs.10 million. We have to spend Rs. 30 million to build new courts again. Do you think this is a fair decision at this moment”, the official asked.