(LANKAPUVATH | COLOMBO) – The 12th Defence Services Games 2023 concluded in an exciting ceremony, marked by vibrant festivities, led by the President of the Defence Services Sports Board and Commander of the Air Force, Air Marshal Udeni Rajapaksa, yesterday (24 November 2023), at the Sugaradasa Indoor Stadium. This event marked the culmination of months of competitive sports, where servicemen and women from the tri-forces showcased their talents across 39 competitive events. The Chief Guest for the ceremony was the State Minister of Defence, Hon. Pramitha Bandara Tennakoon.

In adherence to the annual sports plan recommended by the Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs, the Defence Services Games, a pivotal sports tournament in Sri Lanka, boast the second-largest participation of the Armed Forces’ male and female athletes. Bonus points, as per the rules of the World Indoor Sports Federation, were awarded to athletes displaying prowess in the indoor sports section, affording them the opportunity to partake in the Olympic tournament.

Approximately 3000 athletes participated, aiming to identify capable sports talents during this tournament. The selected individuals will undergo specialized training facilitated by the Defence Services Sports Councils, integrating them into the national sports squads. Currently, a significant portion of athletes in the national youth squad arise from the tri-forces, highlighting the pivotal role of the Defence Service Games as a foundational platform for their success.

The sports arena was not only opened for servicemen and women but also for school athletes, aiming to identify and recognize the next generation of athletic talent. The event included invitational schools such as Mahamaya Girls School in Kandy, Sumana Balika Vidyalaya in Rathnapura, Holy Family Convent in Bambalapitiya, Newstead Girls College in Negombo and many other girls’ schools. Among the invited boys’ schools were St. Joseph College in Colombo, Royal College in Colombo, Ananda College in Colombo, Bandarayake Vidyalaya in Gampaha, Rahula College in Matara, St. Joseph Vaz College in Vennappuwa and many more.

Commencing on 26 October 2022, the Defence Services Games concluded successfully on 24 November 2023. The closing ceremony witnessed the participation of key figures, including Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, General Kamal Gunaratne (Retd), Chief of Defence Staff, General Shavendra Silva, Commander of the Army, Lieutenant General Vikumi Liyanage, Commander of the Navy, Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera and the Secretary of the Defence Services Sports Council, along with senior officers and tri-service sportsmen and women.

The evening’s proceedings were formally brought to a close by the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, General Kamal Guneratne (Retd), who declared the games officially closed. The organization of this year’s Defence Services Games was arranged by the Sri Lanka Air Force and the ceremonial handover of the Defence Services Sports Council flag to the Commander of the Army, Lieutenant General Vikumi Liyanage, by Air Marshal Udeni Rajapaksa marked the commencement of preparations for the 2024 Defence Services Games.

Sri Lanka Army – Gold Medals -147 Silver Medals -144 Bronze Medals -112
Sri Lanka Air Force – Gold Medals -77 Silver Medals -71 Bronze Medals -100
Sri Lanka Navy – Gold Medals -69 Silver Medals -86 Bronze Medals -69

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *