Six Sri Lankan national Optimist sailors to go to Myanmar

Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:02 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

IODA Optimist Sailing Championship Team (from left): Dhanika Nanayakkara of S. Thomas' College, Mt. Lavinia, Anuka Samaraweera of Royal College, Colombo, Niveyn Nanayakkara of S. Thomas' College, Mt. Lavinia, W.P.K. Janaka – Coach, Jehan de Silva of S.Thomas' College, Mt. Lavinia, Sahnya Wewita of Royal College, Colombo and Tarini de Silva of Ladies' College, Colombo



The IODA Asian & Oceanian Sailing Championship 2018, an international sailing championship for Optimist boats is being hosted in Ngwe Saung, Myanmar from 10 to 17 November. This is an internationally recognised prestigious event with 130 participants from 20 countries, including the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the Asian region. 

The Yachting Association of Sri Lanka under The Ministry of Sports, with the approval of the Ministry of Education, selected a six-member team of exceptionally talented junior sailors, aged 15 and under, after selection trials were held at the Bolgoda Lake. These enthusiastic youngsters will be representing Sri Lanka in Myanmar. This regatta held annually by the International Optimist Dinghy Association (IODA), the international governing body for Optimist Sailing in the World, is the most popular youth class sailing dinghy. 

 The Nanayakkara Brothers – Dhanika and Niveyn

IODA is an international body that groups together national Optimist Associations involved in sailing in the countries they are present. The Optimist was designed by Clark Mills in 1947 in Clearwater, Florida USA and the International Optimist Dinghy Association was founded in 1965.

Yachting Association of Sri Lanka COO Sarath Kuragama said that the sport of sailing has uncovered hidden talents of our local sailors who have shown immense potential being able to compete with the international community, while continuously improving their skills with the guidance of the national coach W.P.K. Janaka, the support of the Sri Lankan Navy and the additional support of the school coaches Nadine de Rosairo and Devin Goonewardene. Special mention should go to Jeremy Bolling and to Lalin Jirasinha for their invaluable guidance. 

Kuragama went on to say that they are proud to be chosen to host the IODA Asian & Oceanian Championship in Sri Lanka in 2020, which is due to be held in Passikudah. 

The team comprises of the Nanayakkara brothers, Niveyn and Dhanika, the siblings Jehan and Tarini de Silva, Sahanya Wewita and Anuka Samaraweera.