Janashakthi Insurance has signed up as the Sponsor of the Sri Lanka Air Force Rugby Team for 2011. Chandra Schaffter, Deputy Chairman of Janashakthi Insurance PLC and Air Chief Marshal Roshan Goonetileke, Commander of the Sri Lanka Air Force, inked the agreement.
Also present on the occasion were Prakash Schaffter - Managing Director Janashakthi, Ravi Liyanage - General Manager Sales & Marketing of Janashakthi, Air Commodore Vijitha Gunaratne and Group Captain Harsha Fernando of the Sri Lanka Air Force and SLAF Rugby coach Imthi Marikkar.
General Manager Sales and Marketing of JIPLC Ravi Liyanage said that the Company is proud to be a partner of Sri Lanka Air Force Rugby. “Rugby is a game that fires passion across the whole of Sri Lanka be it at school, club or national level. It ignites enthusiasm across all geographical and ethnic boundaries, and, is undoubtedly a unifying force in this country. The Sri Lanka Air Force Rugby team enjoys a brilliant track record. This partnership is a win-win situation for both parties and we’re confident of a superlative performance through 2011 which will see the SLAF Rugby team emerge champions with JIPLC.”
Commander of the Sri Lanka Air Force, Air Chief Marshall Roshan Goonathilleke said, “We’re thankful to Janashakthi Insurance for this very generous sponsorship. It will help us to upgrade our training equipment, invest in our players and thereby raise standards. 2011 will be the most eventful year in the history of the SLAF as we celebrate 60 years of sacrifice, commitment and dedication in service to the nation. We do have a lot of plans for the Sri Lanka Air Force rugby team this year. We have set our goals on being the rugby league champions this year and have a greater number of Air Force players in Sri Lanka’s national team.”
Brilliantly coached by Imthi Marikkar who is also the coach of Sri Lanka National 7s, the Sri Lanka Air Force rugby team leaves for New Zealand in the near future for further training. The team enjoyed a successful season last year and gained entry into Sri Lanka’s top four rugby teams after a lapse of six years. Last year also saw five of its players add weight and muscle to the Sri Lanka national rugby team. They were - Milinda Jayasinghe (Scrum Half), Radika Hettiarachchi (Full Back), Dilan Soyza (Scrum Back), Chanaka Chandimal (Fly Half) and Charitha Seneviratne (Centre).
Janashakthi has always supported sports and sportsmen and women. Best known for its long association with cricket, it has sponsored several Sri Lankan test cricket series during the past few years. Its current Brand Ambassador is national player Ajantha Mendis. Janashakthi also has two national cricketers on its staff – Suranga Lakmal and Isuru Udana, together with the reigning South Asian Games High Jump Gold Medalist Priyangika Madumanthi on its staff.
Janashakthi has also just launched its annual Athletes Sponsorship Programme for the third consecutive year whereby 08 outstanding outstation student athletes come under its wing. Among them are Ishara Sandeepani Dayananda (Best Athlete at the National Youth Sports Festival for the past three consecutive years) and Amali Harshini (First in the 100M Hurdles at the Thailand Open Athletic Championships 2010).
It has in parallel extended its support to several other sports at national level such as hockey, squash, rowing and sailing thus reiterating its commitment to the long term development of sports in Sri Lanka.