Sri Lanka’s contingent will see an old but prominent flag bearer in Anura Rohana, who is a golfing legend, a silver medallist at an Asian Games, leading the way. At the age of 52 years he is a deserving athlete to carry the flag at the opening ceremony, an example for other athletes who are determined to win a medal this time.
Having secured a silver medal at the 14th Asian Games held in Busan, South Korea in 2002, Rohana will be looking forward to another historic moment. This will be his fourth appearance at the Games.
In recognition of his achievement the National Olympic Committee appointed Rohana as the captain of the men’s team and Gayanthika Abeyratne the women’s team captain.
A former caddie who rose to become a leading golfer expressed his happiness at receiving this rare opportunity. Recently, he finished as runner-up in the September ranking tournament to showcase his enduring skill and passion for the sport.
Rohana’s record extends beyond the Asian Games having secured a string of victories in various Open tournaments across Asia. He is a seven-time winner of the Malaysian Open, the Sri Lanka Open and the Bangladesh Open as well as a winner of the Pakistan Open Golf Tournament.
Meanwhile, showers of blessings poured down the Sri Lankan contingent on their arrival at the village welcomed by the head of Hangzhou Asian Games Village at a simple but elaborate ceremony.
However, some events had already begun like women’s cricket, beach volleyball and rowing.
Rower Mohamed Nafiran finished second in the men’s double sculls in a time of 7m 48.92 seconds. With it he earned a place in the semi-final. The Sri Lankan beach volleyball duo consisting of Deepika Bandara and Chathurika Madushani won against a South Korean duo in the Women’s Preliminary Round with score of 2-0 but lost against the Philippines with a score of 0-2.