|Minister Kiriellas appointees missing
National TT pool picked
by Ravi Nagahawatte
According to sources, three out of a six member selection panel failed to be present at a meeting, which had taken place at the Otter Aquatic Club.
Interestingly, the three selectors who had been absent from the meeting were those appointed by the Minister of Sports, Lakshman Kiriella.
However, what had created some sparks in the table tennis circles is the breach of a sports ministry ruling, by the Sports Minister himself. He is reported to have included as a selector, a person presently involved in coaching, when rules imposed by his Ministry clearly prohibits such appointments.
The appointment of former national champion N. H. Perera, as a selector, is reported to be been challenged by table tennis officials.
Perera, however, is one of three, who despite their appointment, failed make it to the selection meeting.
The other two selectors appointed by the Sports Minister are former national champions, Annesley Gomes and Depak Narendra.
Meanwhile the national pool had been named by the three selectors present. Their appointments were made by the Table Tennis Association of Sri Lanka. The three comprised Sunimal Fernando (Chairman Selection Committee) along with former national champion, Swarna Peiris and Srinath Wijeratne.
It is known that all sports bodies had been notified by Dr. Pratap Ramanujam, Secretary of the Ministry of Sports and Tourism, that persons, at present involved in coaching should not be included as selectors in any sports body. This ruling had been made to officials of sports bodies at a special meeting held recently, with regard to the SAF Games.
Dr. Ramanujam, when contacted, said that he hasnt been officially informed of the incident of the three selectors not turning up at this selection meeting.
However, he added that he had personally informed N. H. Perera of his appointment and the need to be present at this meeting.
" We will conduct an inquiry into regarding the incident. If this has happened, we will ask these selectors for their reasons for not turning up" Ramanujam further said.
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