French Ambassador highlights Coubertin spirit at Sri Lanka NOC’s Olympic Day Run

French Ambassador highlights Coubertin spirit at Sri Lanka NOC’s Olympic Day Run

Colombo, Sri Lanka, June 24, 2022: The National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka marked Olympic Day 2022 on June 23 under the theme “Together, for a better world”. 

The Chief Guest, HE Eric Lavertu, French Ambassador to Sri Lanka, said: “We are gathered today in the NOC of Sri Lanka, more than 10,000 kilometers from France and 85 years after the death of Pierre de Coubertin – father of the modern Olympics. Could Coubertin have imagined that one day his will and his heritage would be celebrated in Sri Lanka? 

“His ideas have indeed crossed the planet. The sports values he wanted to promote are universal and timeless: sharing, friendship, joy in effort, always doing your best.”

The French Ambassador wished the Sri Lankan athletes all the best for the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England, next month and also spoke of his pride in Paris hosting the Olympic Games in 2024.

“I deeply hope that these games will be a moment of sharing, joy and peace. I hope that the situation in Sri Lanka will improve and Sri Lankans will be able to fully follow the Olympic values and encourage their athletes with passion, even if cricket is still not an Olympic sport.” 

Sri Lanka NOC President Suresh Subramaniam added: “Today the word ‘together’ is the latest addition to the Olympic motto: ‘Faster, Higher, Stronger - Together’. 

“We are striving to achieve togetherness and move towards a better Sri Lanka through sports and Olympism.”

The day got underway with the lighting of the traditional Olympic Torch by the NOC President, Secretary General Maxwell de Silva and the French Ambassador.

Joining the Torch igniting ceremony were the Secretary to the Ministry of Sports, Anuradha Wijekoon, Olympic silver medalist Susanthika Jayasinghe and Olympian Niluka Karunaratne. 

Another significant feature of the programme was the Olympic Day Run quiz under one of the Olympic Day pillars of Move, Learn and Discover. There were 275 participants and the three winners were Rahul Jeyanthan, Akarshana Premkumar and Lemuel Pathmapuvanendran.