Colombo, Sri Lanka, September 24, 2021: Sri Lanka Athletics has told the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka that it will give priority to next year’s Asian Games over the Commonwealth Games as both major events take place within five weeks of each other.
“Our best chances are at the Asian Games. We are trying to get the best out of the talent we have and to achieve that we have to get our priorities right. Though we are going to select a team for both events we might not send some athletes for the Commonwealth Games,” a senior official of Sri Lanka Athletics was quoted by the Island newspaper on Friday, September 24.
Hangzhou, China will host the Asian Games from September 10-25, 2022 while the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, UK will be held from July 28 to August 8, 2022.
“Our best chance for a medal at the Asian Games is in the men’s 4x400 metres relay. We might not field that team at the Commonwealth Games,” Saman Kumara, who has been a selector and manager at previous Games, said.
“In 2002 we had both the Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games within a span of two months. We had three men who could run 400 metres in 45 seconds and had a good chance of winning the gold in Busan. But they participated before at the Commonwealth Games and it took a toll when the time came for the Asian Games,” Kumara recollected.
Sri Lanka Athletics will use the centenary National Championships in April 2022 as a final selection trial for both the Asian Games and the Commonwealth Games.