what a laugh it all is… (keeping reasons to myself, topic banned)
Susanthika elected to IAAF Athletes Commission
Pockets US Dollars 20,000 for women’s 200m bronze:
Dinesh Weerawansa reporting from Japan
Sri Lanka’s bronze medalist Susanthika Jayasinghe celebrates on the podium after the women’s 200m final, 31 August 2007, at the 11th IAAF World Athletics Championships, in Osaka. USA’s Allyson Felix won ahead of Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell and Sri Lanka’s Susanthika Jayasinghe. AFP
Athletics: OSAKA Sep.1 - Sri Lanka’s most celebrated athlete, Susanthika Jayasinghe was today elected to the Athletes Commission of the International Association of Athletic Federation (IAAF), the world governing body for track and field.
She will also pocket a handsome cash prize of US Dollars 20,000 (over Rs. 2.24 million) for her women’s 200m bronze medal won last night.
The 31-year-old Lankan sprint queen got this rare honour only a day after winning women’s 200m bronze medal at the 11th IAAF World Championship here. According to Secretary of the AASL, Prema Pinnawale, Jayasinghe becomes the first Sri Lankan to be elected to the high-profile Athletes Commission of the IAAF.
USA’s Allyson Felix crosses the finish line during the women’s 200m final, 31 August 2007, at the 11th IAAF World Athletics Championships, in Osaka. USA’s Allyson Felix won ahead of Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell ® and Sri Lanka’s Susanthika Jayasinghe (2ndL). AFP
USA’s gold medalist Allyson Felix, Jamaica’s silver medalist Veronica Campbell and Sri Lanka’s bronze medalist Susanthika Jayasinghe celebrate on the podium after the women’s 200m final, 31 August 2007, at the 11th IAAF World Athletics Championships, in Osaka. USA’s Allyson Felix won ahead of Veronica Campbell and Sri Lanka’s Susanthika Jayasinghe. AFP
At the elections held at team hotels in Hanshin, ANA, Righa Grand, Sheraton, Miyako and Righa Grand during the past five days, there was a 61% voter turnout.
Of the 1,161 votes casted for the 18 seats in the IAAF Athletes’ Commission, Jayasinghe polled 508 votes to secure a sensational win. She is one of the four Asians elected with others being Koji Murofushi (Japan), Mohammed Al Azemi (Kuwait), Hamdon Awadh Al Bishi (Saudi Arabia).
Olympic gold medallist in men’s high jump Stefan Holm of Sweden received the most number of votes (929) while Japanese hammer throw gold medallist at Athens Olympics, Koji Murofushi came a close second (913).
For the next two years, until the next IAAF World Championships in Germany 2009, Jayasinghe will have to play a key role as a member of the elite committee where the Lankan lass will have the luxury of working with some of the top most athletes in the world.
Pinnawala played a keyrole in securing votes for the Lankan lass as the members of the IAAF Athletes Commission are elected through a vote amongst participating athletes. Having served in the local Olympic and athletic governing bodies for over two decades, Pinnawale used his good office to secure votes for the Olympic medallist.
The AASL Secretary, who has been in close association with former world champions turned IAAF top officials Sergey Bubka and Sebastian Coe, gave Jayasinghe a big backing by canvassing at team hotels.
‘I am honoured to be elected to the IAAF Athletes Commission. I won a World Championship medal for Sri Lanka ten years after I won my country’s first ever medal in 1997. Now here in Osaka, a day after my medal-winning feat in 200m, I was able to secure a mandate from athletes here to serve in the IAAF Athletes Commission. I feel great,’ a jubilant Jayasinghe said.
Meanwhile, Jayasinghe’s lone effort lifted Sri Lanka to the 33rd place in the overall medals table of the Osaka World Championship. Considering the fact that the hosts Japan has failed to win a single medal at the time of writing, it is creditable for little-known Sri Lanka to take the 33rd place out of 203 countries taking part at the meet.
Jayasinghe left for Tokyo this morning to visit her friends and fans in the Japanese capital on a 24-hour trip and is due to return to Regha Royal Hotel here tomorrow. She was accompanied by her husband cum coach Dhammika Nandakumara, who functions here as the Team Leader.
The Lankan sprint queen will also pocket US Dollars 20,000 for her bronze medal while the gold medallist of the women’s 200m, American Allyson Felix will get USD 80,000 and second-placed Jamaican Veronica Campbell US Dollars 40,000.
Campbell’s total prize money is US Dollars 120,000 with the USD 80,000 she gets for the women’s 100m gold. The IAAF is offering attractive cash incentive to the finalists of each event, ranging from US Dollars 4,000 to US Dollars80,000.
In addition, any athlete who surpasses a World record at the IAAF World Championships in Athletics will be awarded $100,000, donated by IAAF Partners Toyota (for women) and TDK (for men).
No prize money will be distributed until all drug test results are finalized. Meanwhile, Sunday will be the penultimate day of the 203-nation world athletic extravaganza. A total of eight finals are scheduled for the day, commencing from women’s marathon schedule for the morning.
The evening schedule include finals of women’s high jump, men’s javelin throw, men’s 5,000m, men’s 800m and women’s 1,500m. The championship would conclude with the men’s and women’s 400m relays, followed by the closing ceremony.