Muscat: The Embassy of Sri Lanka together with the Sri Lankan expatriate community in the Sultanate of Oman organised the 75th Independence Day Cricket Trophy-2023, as a part of the year-long events for celebrating the 75th anniversary of the country.
The cricket tournament was held at the Oman Cricket (OC) grounds in Al Amerat on 28 April from 7.00 am to 1130 pm. The team representing St. Anthony’s College, Wattala won the 75th Independence Day Cricket Trophy-2023 while Richmond College- Mahinda College, Gale combined team won the runners-up trophy.
The Sri Lankan Embassy will have a series of events to mark the 75th Anniversary from February 2023 to January 2024. The 75th Independence Day function commenced with the flag hoisting ceremony at the Embassy on 4 February 2023.
The cricket tournament was organised to remember old school days memories of Sri Lankan expatriates. The event commenced with the playing of the National Anthem by the students from Sri Lankan School, Muscat School and unveiling of the 75th Independence Day Trophy by the Ambassador of Sri Lanka to the Sultanate of Oman AL Sabarullah Khan.
Twelve teams participated in the tournament representing 16 schools in Sri Lanka. Former students representing Richmond College- Mahinda College, Galle, D.S Senanayake College, Colombo, Al Hasniya Maha Vidyalaya- Al Manar National School, Dharmapala College, Pannipitiya, St. Anthony’s College, Wattala, Zahira College, Matale, Maliyadeva College, Kurunegala, Rahula College, Matara, Joe-Pete, Colombo, St. Thomas College, Ananda College, Colombo, Central College Akkaraipaththu- Zahira Kalmunai participated.
The first semi-final was played between Al Hasniya Maha Vidyalaya- Al Manar National School and Richmond College- Mahinda College while the second semi-final was between Maliyadeva College, Kurunagala and St. Anthony’s College, Wattala.
A fun cricket match was also organised for the women Sri Lankan cricket players in the Sultanate. A cultural show by the Sri Lankan School Muscat students was quite enthralling.
Fun games for kids, sports quizzes for audiences, a lucky draw for Sri Lankans visitors, a special live band performance, and stalls with Sri Lankan food and tea were also arranged.
The Embassy conveyed its sincere gratitude to the Chairman of Oman Cricket Pankaj Khimji and former national cricket player and test captain of Sri Lanka, Dulip Mendis, for making available the prestigious Oman Cricket ground.
This event would not have been possible without the support extended by the management, including Lakshitha Iroshan Dayarathne and Anoop Cholath Kandy.
The event was broadcasted live on YouTube, which had thousands of views from the Sri Lankan community around the world. International commentator Pranav Mehta, International Umpire Navaneetha Krishnan, and Ravindra Rajagopal added value through their live commentary of the event. The umpiring and scoring duties were done by Freddie Lonappar, Samir Sattar Parker, Sagir Vengitta, Kapil Venkatachalam, Venugopal Unnithan and Liyanage Ramesh Fernando. The technical support on sounds and live broadcasting were managed by Extreme Manager Ranjan Sagara, Audio Operator Charith Chamara, Assistant Tec. Mohan Dissanayake, DF Eranga and Technical Director Jude Quinston Pillai, Assistant Camera Operator Kuruwitage Danushka, Anthony Jacob respectively. The photography was managed by K Shafeer.
The Executive committee included the CEO of the BPOS, a Sri Lankan pioneer banker residing in Oman for about 48 years, Anselm Perera and Mrs Frances Perera, while F Anaka Hewage, Lalindra Fernando, Nishantha Perera and Ms F Anete Daang were in the operational committee. The BPOS Global L -C in the Sultanate of 0man was the event manager for this tournament and tremendous effort was exerted by them for the success of the tournament.
Over 1,000 Sri Lankans residing in the Sultanate and cricket fans were present at the stadium.