Like many other
games, Badminton was also introduced to "Ceylon" by the advent of British
well over 100 years ago. Its on record that the first Badminton Club was
formed in 1909 in "Dimbulla " by the British plantation Community in the
general area of the hill country Dimbulla Club has been conducting Badminton
tournaments regularly at Inter Club and Individual basis, during the early
part of the 20th century. However it was in 1950 that "Badminton Association
of Ceylon" was formed and first Senior National Men & Women Championships
were conducted in the year 1953 and continues regularly without any interruptions.
From 1950 up to about 1970, however, the game at competition level was confined
to a few clubs and a handful of Schools mainly in Colombo barring one or
two outstation schools.
An important milestone was achieved in the latter
part of 1970, when the "Schools Badminton Association of Ceylon' was formed
by the legendary "Ariyadasa Silva" of Ambalangoda. With this move, with
the Schools Association conducting its first ever " Junior Nationals in
June 1971 saw a huge participation amongst the school children from all
parts of the Island.
Today, the Badminton Association could boast over 5000
children taking part at the Junior Nationals (2004), from over 150 Schools,
which is arguably the singular largest tournament in Sri Lanka, vis-à-vis
participation. It has 20 active District Associations and arrangements are
being made to popularize the game in an organized manner in the other Districts
First Sri Lankan Woman to Qualify From
the Sport for Olympic Games
Badminton player Thilini
Jayasinghe has become the first Sri Lankan woman to qualify from the
sport for Olympic Games. She is 23-year old and attended to Mahamaya
Girls' School in Kandy. Thilini was selected on performances at 10
international meets where she ranked 45th from a total of 48
contestants who will represent their respective countries at the
Beijing Games in August.