HNB hails Sri Lanka Paralympic heroes

CEYLON TODAY | Published: 2:00 AM Nov 22 2021
Sports HNB hails Sri Lanka Paralympic heroes

Sri Lanka’s very first Olympic Gold Medallist together with the Bronze medallist and participant delegation to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, resonated a vibrant and inspirational example to new generation athletes and youth of the country, at a felicitation ceremony organized by the country’s leading private bank, HNB. 

Recognising their outstanding performances – which included securing Gold and Bronze medals and establishing a new world record – HNB’s Sustainability Foundation presented plaques and cash rewards to the award winning athletes, coaches and officials who were part of the delegation. The felicitation ceremony, held at HNB Towers, the Bank’s head office, was attended by HNB Managing Director /CEO – Jonathan Alles, Chief Transformation Officer/DGM – L. Chiranthi Cooray, Deputy General Manager –Retail& SME Banking – Sanjay Wijemanne and HNB Sports Club President/AGM Hisham Ally, as well as National Paralympic Committee (NPC) of Sri Lanka Honorary President, Lieutenant Colonel Deepal Herath and other officials. 

“You have scaled mountains that others only dream of conquering,” HNB Managing Director/CEO, Jonathan Alles said, congratulating the members of the delegation. 

“We, at HNB draw inspiration from your achievements and hope that the country’s youth and new generation of athletes too will do the same. Sports can help develop qualities which are essential for organizations, particularly teamwork, and the country will benefit from youth taking a greater interest in sports activities.” The highlight of the event was the felicitation of Dinesh Herath – who won Gold in the Men’s Javelin Throw F46 – and Samitha Dulan Kodithuwakku – the Bronze medallist in the Men’s Javelin Throw F64. 

Herath is also the first Sri Lankan to win an Olympic or Paralympic Gold and set a new world record in his event. “We applaud the dedication and commitment of our Paralympic athletes which enabled them to emerge victorious at the highest international level, a truly remarkable and inspiring achievement,” L. Chiranthi Cooray said. 

“As one of the country’s leading private sector establishments, HNB sees recognising, encouraging and nurturing Sri Lanka’s national heroes and being inclusive as part of our broader social agenda.” The other Paralympic athletes who were felicitated at the ceremony are; Sampath Hettiarachchi, Palitha Bandara, Saman Subasinghe, Kumudu Priyanka, Mahesh Jayakody, Sampath Bandara and Suresh Dharmasena. 

The event also honoured six coaches and three officials who were part of the delegation. “Such recognition by organisations of the calibre of HNB will no doubt serve as a great source of motivation for both existing and future Paralympic athletes,” Lieutenant Colonel Deepal Herath said. “This initiative is most timely, especially at a time when athletes face numerous challenges, since sports and sporting events have been severely hampered by the pandemic.” He added that the NPC has initiated a long-term visionary programme that scouts for and nurtures talent, through structured development and training and evaluation – for both athletes and coaches. The success at the Paralympics was a validation of this initiative and was achieved as a result of the combined efforts of all who were involved, Herath noted

CEYLON TODAY | Published: 2:00 AM Nov 22 2021

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