Youngster Nevindu Lakman breaks into top 3 in Asian Junior Squash  Ranking- Eyes for top spot by yearend.


Newly crowned Asian Junior Squash number 3 and young Sri Lankan squash sensation, Nevindu Lakman has been in top from in the Asian circuit in the past few months.

Nevindu Lakman did well to qualify for semi finals at Indian Junior Open held in February 2023 (Asian Junior Platinum event) and Southern Slam Indian Junior Open in May 2023 (Asian Junior Gold event) and became 3rd at Singapore Junior Open held in December 2022 (Asian Junior Gold event) with the icing on the cake being becoming runner up at Qatar Junior Open (Asian Junior Silver event) in March 2023.

This rising star even drew attention at recently concluded Asian Junior Team championship held in India when he went on to beat no 1 players from Kuwait and Singapore after stretching no 1 players from Hong Kong and Japan to very tightly contested encounters.

With all these achievements under his belt he is currently Ranked No 3 in Asia as per the latest Ranking provided by Asian Squash Federation and Sri Lanka Squash(SLS) is very positive for him to become the Asian Junior No 1 player with a few more tournaments left for him to reach the pinnacle this year.

Squash was included to the High-performance training program in 2021 by the Ministry of sports as one of the few sports identified in Sri Lanka. This program has helped top players reach new heights internationally especially winning International PSA tournaments and moving steadily to top 150 in the world within a span of 1 year.

National high-performance team training for the year 2022 was conducted under the guidance of former Pakistani national coach Rehman Gul supported by coaches Gihan Suwaris and Naduni Gunawardena funded under the high performance program. Sri Lanka squash retained physical trainer Ashan Gamlath to support the program with SLS funds paving to produce players winning medals at international and PSA league tournaments. Current Junior National Champion from D S Senanayake College, Nevindu Lakman was also a part of the above program. Nevindu received a huge boost from the program to become the latest to break into top international ranking.

A proper training program managed by an internationally qualified and experienced squash coach and a trainer along with participation at International tournaments in very critical for him to improve his International ranking while obtaining the much needed International exposure.

Although Sri Lankan players have done incredibly well last year moving to top 150 rankings in the world and top 3 in Asian junior ranking it will be hard to maintain those standards and improve further unless the High performance program with a focus on Quality training, nutrition and International exposure is continued to groom these upcoming stars.

Unfortunately, the High-Performance program focusing on all such aspects which was initiated in 2021 which went on to show results in a very short period was discontinued by Ministry of sports. It has been made to understand by SLSF that Sri Lanka Squash and its top players have requested the ministry of sports to reactivate the high-performance program which gave rise and did [positively contribute towards the development of a number of top players in the resent past.

Relating to funding for participation at international tournaments expenses for above achievements of Nevindu Lakman was provided by his Alma mater, private corporate sponsors, Sri Lanka Squash and well-wishers.

Although it has not been possible by the ministry of Sports to accommodate funding requirements in recent past due to lack of funds, it would be a huge boosting factor if such funding could be resumed in support of squash so that these talented players would be in a position to represent Sri Lanka in upcoming international events and bringing glory to the country.