Athletics is regarded as the mother of all sports and is more than just one sport. Athletics not only strengthens your body physically but also improves your body coordination and mental stamina. Athletics is a sport that has it all; this includes competitive running, jumping, throwing, and walking.
Needless to say, this has not been the best year for athletes. With Covid-19 spreading and lockdowns unrolling across the country, we had no way of continuing practices the way it was before. However, we found ways to utilize our time for the next best thing. I, for one, have been working out at home and driving myself to keep my fitness at its prime and I’m sure most of our athletes have done their best to ensure they maintain their fitness and health to the best of their ability during such difficult situations.
To our great disappointment, most of the key events, including the Annual Inter-House Athletics Championship and ISAC, have been cancelled. However, we must strive forward and prepare ourselves for the upcoming years and aim at securing more medals for our school. With the help of our committed coaches, Ms. Roshini, Mr. Hemantha and Mr. Lakmal, I have no doubt about our team achieving these great outcomes. Lastly, I would like to thank all the coaches for everything they did to help us better ourselves.
Years 2020 and 2021 have not been in favor of sports. To keep students motivated and healthy when at home, our coach sent us a fitness programme.
In March, all practices were cancelled due to the nationwide lockdown. Our school hosted an inter-international school badminton tournament for the Under 12 age group which commenced on the 10th of March at the Mercantile Badminton Association. Fourteen schools took part in the tournament and our school team managed to make their way to the semifinals. Lyceum International School Nugegoda and Lyceum International School Wattala were declared as the winners and 1st runner up respectively.
To promote social distancing, a programme was implemented to carry out practices for improving students’ physical fitness. Students were split into groups and assigned a time slot.
Basketball is one of the most interesting sports I have always wanted to engage in, even as a little child. It was a dream come true when I started playing basketball in middle school. My participation in basketball had numerous effects on my life, and these are physical, personal, and social.
Basketball is a team game and in order for the whole team to succeed, everyone must be in good shape, both physically and mentally. Due to vigorous exercises, we are able to develop physical fitness and better shape. Being constantly active on the court also allowed us to keep improving my physique every day. This had allowed us to maintain a school-life balance overall in terms of academics too.
As our coach, Mr. Kunchana Samarakoon, was quite strict with us in terms of time management, he did manage to help many of us to wake up early and come for practices.
Basketball is a game based on trust – you pass the ball to your team, trusting them to take the right action that would benefit the whole team. The relationships I built with my teammates would last a lifetime as my most precious memories.
Although the year in review has been quite tough on many of us due to the prevailing pandemic, it is our sole duty to stay in shape and be more active during these harsh times.
In 2019, Stafford International School’s Under 19 basketball team was able to secure 4th place in the Inter-Schools Division C Basketball Tournament. We had to face many tough matches and thanks to our coaches’ training and support we managed to outplay some top schools in Sri Lanka. If we are able to put in a little more work and effort into our regime, we will be able to play in more top-class tournaments and earn a title in the near future.
If you put your heart and soul into the game, the benefits you derive from playing will be more intensely felt than sitting at home doing nothing. The lessons you learn both in game and at practice will help you become a better and lawful person. I hope some of you will take up the challenge and join the basketball team to bring honour to our school.
Football has always had a significant role in the school life of many Staffordians – the basketball court is invaded by football fanatics daily. Remarkable improvements have been seen in many players over the past two years, higher fitness has led to players being able to work harder than before. These enhancements show just a glimpse of what could be done with the small population at our school.
Furthermore, the partnership with TAFA provided us with coaches that helped us enhance our skills even more. As a result, we have performed exceptionally well in the few tournaments we participated in.
I see a lot of good potential in the years to come – I believe that with the resources we are provided with, football at Stafford will be able to reach even greater heights.
I would like to thank our coaches, teachers in charge, and the support staff for helping us in every way possible.
The Karate team of Stafford International School trained for the first few weeks before we had to resort to staying at home due to Covid-19.
Karate can be described as a martial art, or fighting method, involving a variety of techniques, including blocks, strikes, evasions, throws, and joint manipulations. Karate practice is divided into three aspects: Kihon (basics), Kata (forms), and Kumite (sparring).
Karate practice strengthens the mind, develops composure, a clearer thought process, deeper insight into one’s mental capabilities, and more self-confidence. It strengthens the entire body, improves coordination, quickens reflexes, builds stamina and overall health. It values courtesy, integrity, humility, justice, honor, and self-control.
Karate practice benefits the students in all areas of their life, it is an activity in which advancing age is not a hindrance.
Even though we are unable to conduct any sessions, Mr. Saparamadu was a great help for us. We are looking forward to meeting new members in the next academic year.
The benefits of swimming are numerous, a few being that it helps build endurance, muscle strength, and cardiovascular fitness.
The swimming team of Stafford International School trained for 2 weeks in September before we had to temporarily stop due to the constraints of Covid-19.
The global pandemic, unfortunately, led to the cancellation of all the meets we had planned to participate in for the years 2020/21. However, we were able to carry out a few online dryland training sessions via Zoom, conducted by our Head Coach, Mr. Janaka, to help our swimmers stay fit at home.
In November 2020, the Games Captain Rezah Maharoof and Deputy Games Captain Nadith Gunawardena hosted a Zoom conference with the swimmers and athletes of Stafford. They addressed the importance of our students staying physically active even whilst staying at home. The Swimming Captain for the years 2020/21, Kyara Nugawela, was introduced to the Swimming team at this occasion.
Despite not being able to train, our head coach, Mr. Janaka and fitness coach Mr. Raghvan Roshan, continuously send our swimmers home work-outs and exercises to ensure we stay active.
We are looking forward to meeting new members in the next academic year.
Over the last year and a half, the world suffered from Covid-19. This meant all lives and economies were at risk. Sports also suffered these consequences, but we, Staffordians, were able to see some exceptional performances.
Chathurya and Vichinthya Nilaweera displayed a flawless game at the Sri Lanka Nationals and Colombo Championships.
Chathurya was able to capture 3 titles and created history becoming the youngest ever duo to win the 105th national doubles title partnering with Thehan Wijemanna. Vichinthya also showed some tremendous performance as he bagged 2 titles. Overall, this tournament was a remarkable success as these two Staffordians were able to make their alma mater proud.
Colombo Championship was held in February. The Nilaweera brothers were able to keep their standard high once again. Chathurya was able to defend his Under 18 singles category. Vichinthya also showed results by becoming the semi-finalist of the Under 16 category.
We are looking forward to meeting the new recruits and are planning many more training activities to develop more outstanding tennis players.