NAA honours athletes, unveils calendar

Kathmandu, April 29

The Nepal Athletics Association honoured medallists, national record holders and legendary athletes and made public its calendar of national and international events amidst the NAA Award Ceremony here today.

A total of 18 athletes — three international medallists and 15 athletes who broke national records in the past three years — were felicitated, while the legendary athletes Baikuntha Manandhar and Jeet Bahadur KC along with past chief coaches and coaches were honoured for their contribution to the sport.

Saraswoti Bhattarai, who broke the national record in 1,500m race in the Rio Olympic Games last year, received Rs 10,000 for winning two silver medals in the Thailand Open Track and Field Championship in 2015. Amrita Mahato, who bagged a bronze in discuss throw in Thailand, and Som Bahadur Kumal, who won 800m gold and 400m silver in the Brunei Open in March, were also handed over Rs 10,000 each.

Chandra Kala Lamgade, who broke a total of five national records in shot put and javelin throw — including two in last year’s seventh National Games in Eastern Region — received the highest amount of Rs 25,000, while Dil Maya Karki earned Rs 16,000 for shattering four records — two each in 400m and 4X400m.

Likewise, Sabita Chaudhary, who broke three national records in 400m and 4X400m races, was feted with Rs 11,000. The 100m and 200m national record holder Yam Sajan Sunar received Rs 10,000 for breaking two records, while Kanchhi Maya Koju (marathon), Amrita Mahato (discuss throw) and Sima Kumari Tharu (javelin throw) also earned Rs 10,000 each.

Gopi Chand Parki (10,000m), Surya Khatri (high jump), Saraswoti Bhattarai (1,500m) and Hari Rimal (5,000m) received Rs 5,000 each. Pramila Rijal, Brinda Dhanke Shrestha, Manamati Bista and Krishna Chaudhary received 3,000 each for making a new mark in 4X400m.

Coaches Pushpa Raj Ojha, Rakesh Bajracharya, Bikram Jung Thapa, Chhabi Lal Thapa, Dhani Ram Chaudhary and Sushil Narsingh Rana were felicitated along with the 12th SA Games team manager Santosh Shrestha. Also, past chief coaches Madhu Shumser Rana, Khadga Bahadur Ranabhat, Biswa Prakash Thapa, Narayan Yadav, Narayan Bahadur Pradhan, Nara Bahadur Shahi and Sushil Narsingh Rana were also honoured on the occasion.

Meanwhile, the NAA released the annual calendar that included eight national events in the current fiscal and five international participations in 2017. As per the schedule, the National Athletics Championship will be held in Kathmandu from December 7-9. NAA has planned to organise the National Cross Country Championship in Kathmandu two months later, while the Adidas NAA 10k Road Race is slated for August 26.

The Golden Sprint Meet will be held in Kathmandu on September 24, while the National Youth and Junior Athletics Championship is scheduled for November 4-6 in Nepalgunj. The NAA calendar also includes Officiating Course in Hetauda and IAAF Level-I Seminar in Kathmandu.

Nepali athletes will participate in five international events this year — second Youth Asian Athletics Championship from May 20-23 in Bangkok, 22nd Asian Athletics Championship from July 6-9 in India, IAAF World Championship from August 4-17 in London, 14th Asian Marathon Championship in November and International Open Meet.