Weight lifters left high and dry | Sunday Observer

Weight lifters left high and dry

19 July, 2020
Chintana Vidhanage
Chintana Vidhanage

Sri Lanka’s weight lifters who have brought glory and honour to the country having won medals in various international events, have already started training with the focus in competing at international events but they have also been left in the lurch since May without their entitled Allowance for nutrition intake.

Four weight lifters who have performed well overseas were listed to receive this Allowance from the Sports Development Department of the Sports Ministry and have been forced to follow their own methods to make ends meet and monitor their weight and strength.

They were able to win medals at the Commonwealth Games held in Gold Coast, Australia, (2018), Glasgow, Scotland (2014), New Delhi, India (2010) and Melbourne, Australia (2006). Chintana Vidhanage won the gold medal in Melbourne and a silver medal at the New Delhi Games.

Sudesh Peiris won a bronze medal at the New Delhi Games in 2010 and was the solitary medal winner at the 2014 Glasgow Games. Indika Dissanayake won a silver medal from the Commonwealth Games held in Gold Coast while Chaturanga Lakmal and Dinusha Gomes won bronze medals from the same Games.

The achievements had prompted former sports minister Faiszer Musthapha to allocate the Allowance for selected weight lifters while targeting the next Commonwealth Games to be held in 2022.

Weight lifters have been the frontline medal winners at international events and according to officials it is the responsibility of the Weight Lifting Federation and the Sports Development Department to provide them with the necessary funds for international preparation which is highly professional.

“Their next focus is on the Tokyo Olympics and the weight lifters have to maintain their fitness and strength and above all need the required supplements without which it becomes a big drawback,” said one official.