“Team Mora” is ready for the championship

University of Moratuwa had a golden era in sports, with bunch of championships in past few years. But suddenly in 2015, autumn came and push down Mora. UOM lagged behind after becoming champions in 2013 and 2014.

Now again, the fresh sunshine of new hopes has tohuched Mora with Inter University Games 2017. UOM has won the 2nd runner up with great colors in various sports.

MoraSpirit caught two giants who lead UOM team to be the 2nd runner up in IUG 2017.

As all mentioned, he was the pillar of Mora sports. Director of Physical Education Division, Mr. Rathnamudali gave some ideas first.

Q1: What were the plans you had for 2017?

We had many plans and strategies to get a better achievement than in past years. We paid much attention about practice sessions, motivational programs and nutrition need for players and had a clear goal of getting many first places. Though we also did many things to have a better achievement, getting third place was an achievement of players with their heavy effort.

Q2: After losing a place for 2 years, how did you uplift UOM team?

It is true that we were behind for two years. But we were the champions in both IUG and SLUG before 2015. To get that championship we had an extraordinary effort. But past 2-3 years we didn’t had such an extraordinary effort. We did hard work, which can be continued, developed and practical as well. So now we are on the track again with the system which is more sustain.

Q3: How about Mora players, compared to other Universities?

Our players are great! Our players and teams are in a very higher position among other Universities. As a university with limited number of students we can be proud of our players. We are competing with the leading universities like Peradeniya and Kelaniya which are having more than 15,000 students. And also, SJP University and University of Sabaragamuwa consist of sports related degrees and national level players as well. Balancing hard academic work with sports, our players are doing a great job!

Q4: Girls are less in UOM. How did you manage girls’ teams to become 4th in women’s category?

Actually we have to appreciate our girls. Becoming 4th place with limited number of girls was not an easy task. They practiced and played well as same as boys. But if there were more girls we can support more to add marks to UOM. So I would like to invite UOM girls for sports and keep our University uplifted.

Q5: What about the participation of students in UOM for sports?

As I said before we can be proud of our students. With so much obstacles, so much hardships, they all worked with the team spirit to achieve their goals. Their participation along with academics should be highly appreciated.

Q6: What are the future plans, especially for 2018?

As a University we are already strong in sports. But there are many things to be developed. These days we are discussing about new plans and strategies for the coming IUG and SLUG. We have identified that some psychological factors have affected some players. So we are planning to do some motivational programs. Along with that, we are going to have new coaches also.

Those are for IUG and SLUG. Thinking about overall university sports we are going to increase the facilities for recreation type of sports more than high performance sports. From that we are hoping to increase the participation of students and balance their lives with good health.

Q7: Do you have any message to give to the entire students?

I have to address all the students, especially UOM students. I invite all of you to participate in sports at least in your leisure time. If you participate, more facilities will be provided by the university.

As well, I would like to remind you about the fresher’s meet 2017. For the first time all the four faculties are participating this and it will be held on 16th and 17th of November 2017. I invite all of you for that event.

Then we caught Savindu Herath, The Sports Captain of UOM.

Q1: What were your plans at the beginning of the year?

The basic plan at the beginning of the term is to prepare the teams for Inter University Games. Inter University Games were very competitive and every team puts in their maximum effort to be victorious. Therefore, a team needs lot of preparation to perform well under pressure in the given circumstances. So, the main aspects of the preparation plan were to maximize the number of practice sessions, play many practice matches as possible, minimize injuries and focus on Inter University Games.

First and foremost, it was important to establish the coordination and communication with the Sports Advisory Board, Division of Physical Education, Sports Council, and MoraSpirit since it is a collective effort and we should unite everyone’s effort in achieving success at Inter University Games.

We coordinated with the Captains and Vice Captains of every sport and implemented the plan and I believe that each and every member of the teams put in their maximum effort for Inter University Games 2017 and it was the main reason that we could lift our university up from where we stopped in last year’s SLUG.

We strengthened our communication channels using regular meetings with sports teams and MoraSpirit, twitter account and facebook groups to carry the heat of the games to every nook and corner of the university.

This year we promoted “Team Mora” concept right from the beginning to gather every sports team and all its stakeholders around the common goal of being Champions of Inter University Games 2017. I hope it was a fruitful initiative since it showed progressive results when compared to last two years.

Q2: What were your feelings after becoming the 2nd runner up?

It was indeed a satisfactory result for all of us when compared with last two years. All in all, it was a decent improvement. The credit should go to everyone who sacrificed many things just to bring glory to Mora, officials as well as players. But for myself, I feel we could have done better since University of Moratuwa was the Overall Champions in 2013 and 2014 and I wanted to see University of Moratuwa being crowned Champions in my last year as well.

Q3: Which teams surprised you and over performed in this year?

The most surprising performance came from the Volleyball Men’s team emerging as Champions after a great fight. Both Men and Women Carom teams performed outstandingly. Karate Men and Women also did a brilliant job. Table Tennis Men and Women teams also earned us a lot of points. Rugby team missed their Championship after 4 years but their show was exceptional as usual. Rowing crew grabbed their traditional Championship with ease this time as well. My team, the Hockey team also played exceptionally well with lot of youngsters. Even though the Badminton Men’s team missed the Championship after 4 years both men and women teams emerged 2nd Runner up. The achievements of Football team and the Basketball team are also worth mentioning here.

Moreover, it was also surprising the support we received from the MoraSpirit team led by Ms. Aruni Rathnasekara supporting and promoting sports not only in University of Moratuwa but also in the whole Sri Lankan university system. MoraSpirit is an epitome for other student based media organizations.

Q4: What do you think about the teams of other universities who got championship and first runner up?

They performed really well with great enthusiasm and confident. I hope it was a superb team effort from them since winning the Overall Championship of Inter University Games is not an easy task which can be done overnight. It needs a lot of commitment, focus, dedication, preparation and luck. And I make this a point to Congratulate University of Sri Jayewardenepura and University of Colombo for being Champions and Runners up respectively and wish them all the success in the years to come as well. The fight for glory between the universities is what it makes the games more competitive and interesting.

Q5: How about the support given by the university?

The support received for the players from the Sports Advisory Board and Department of Physical Education was really encouraging. I would rather say the officials did their level best to assist, encourage, facilitate and develop sports/sports teams for Inter University Games 2017.

I would like to express my gratitude to Sports Advisory Board led by Dr. (Mrs). Sanja Gunawardane and Division of Physical Education led by Mr. K. R. D. C. Rathnamudali for the support extended to us at all times.

I want to thank the office bearers of the Sports Council Isuru Sarathchandra - Secretary ,Lahiru Ambegoda - Vice President ,Yasith Jayasinghe - Treasurer, Disal Kuruppuarachchi - Editor, Ruchira Samarawickrama - Lady Representative as well.

Q6: Who were your best players this year?

There were 7 players from different sports who represented Sri Lanka at World University Games 2017 in Taipei, Taiwan. I am really proud of those players as they brought pride to Team Mora by being the top ranked players in their respective sports. They did an excellent job at Inter University Games to make their teams victorious as well. I thank them for bringing experience to their teams from the way they play and fostering young players.

However, there are “Star Players” in every team. What actually matters is, how the team coordinates with each other and the collective effort will determine the ultimate result. Therefore, what is important is the “team” not “individuals”. As a team, “Team Mora” is stronger.

Q7: UOM was somewhere in a higher place before and stepped down in few years. What did u do to uplift it again?

Yes, I agree to the fact that Team Mora lagged behind in the last two years after being Champions in 2013 and 2014. And we as the Sports Council this year, did not do anything extraordinary. We just strengthened the communication channels and enhanced inter and intra team communications. It made the team bond and team spirit stronger. Since the teams were well bonded and prepared the performances of the teams were improved which made the ultimate result better than the last two years.

Additionally, preparation, desire and the enthusiasm of the teams were at a higher level this time which was also a positive factor.

Q8: What will be your plan for 2018?

Plans for 2018 is also simple. Every team should adopt a methodical preparation plan inclusive of practice sessions, practice matches, nutrition and fitness sessions, injury prevention and treatment etc. Every team should have a dream, a burning desire to win the Inter University Championship in their respective sport because the dreams are the things which make you work.

When the contributions of everyone unite it will be easy to bring the Championship back to Mora and we should start working on it now onwards. I believe the promising youngsters will win the Championship in 2018.

“Team Mora” is ready to fly with the upcoming championships. Are you witness that? Keep in touch with MoraSpirit.

Article by: Janani Kulasekara
Edited by: Kasuni Harshika
Sponsored by: Millennium IT

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