Chief of Army Staff General Rajendra Chhetri (top left) hands over trophy to members of the Air Defense Directorate for securing first position in the football tournament held under the CoAS Trophy at the Army Physical Training and Sports Center, Lagankhel on Wednesday. ( Photo Courtesy: Nepalese Army )
KATHMANDU, Sept 14: Nepalese Army felicitated swimmer Sirish Gurung and athlete Saraswati Bhattarai during the closing ceremony of Chief of Army Staff Trophy Sports Tournament 2073 on Wednesday for breaking national records in the recently held Rio Olympics.
Sirish is affiliated to the Tribhuvan Army Club while Saraswati is a lance corporal at the Air Defense Battery of the Nepalese Army.
Sirish set new national record in 100 meters freestyle event in the Rio Olympics on August 9 completing the distance in 57.76 seconds in heat 2 to improve his previous mark of 58.22 seconds.
Likewise, Saraswati Bhattarai broke 26-year-old national record in the heats round of women's 1500 m race during the Rio Olympics on August 14.
Saraswati clocked 4 minutes 33.94 seconds to set the new national record. She surpassed the previous national record of 4 minutes 34.45 seconds held by Raj Kumari Pandey set during the Asian Games in 1990.
Meanwhile, a new national record was created during the month-long sports tournament, which also serves as selection for the upcoming national games.
Surya Khatri of the Valley Division Headquarters broke the national record in men's high jump on Septemebr 6. He jumped 1.99 meters to better the previous mark of 1.98 meters, according to Captain Rajendra Bhandari - gold medalist of 2010 South Asian Games.
“The games were conducted by officials from the respective sports associations. The national record has been acknowledged by the officials of Nepal Athletics Association,” said Lieutenant Colonel Ram Kaji Rana Magar, chief of the Army Physical Training and Sports Center, Lagankhel.
According to Lt Col Rana Magar, the tournament is the basis for selection of players for the Seventh National Games to be held in the Eastern Region from November 23 to 30.
Altogether 12 teams from different units of army had participated in the competition. Air Defense Directorate won the football title on the final day of the tournament. Army Chief General Rajendra Chhetri handed over trophy, medals and cash prize to the winners during a function at the Army Army Physical Training and Sports Center, Lagankhel on Wednesday.
Judo coach Indra Dangol, mentor of SAG gold medaist Phupu Lhamu Khatri, was also felicitated by the Nepalese Army for his contribution in helping army scale new heights in the game.
The Nepalese Army also honored six ex-athletes with Life Time Achievement Award. The players to get the award are Dhruba Bahadur Gurung and Shankar Tamang of taekwondo, Babukaji Dhaubanjar of football, Purna Bahadur Gurung of boxing, Gyan Bahadur Shrestha of weight lifting and swimmer Sitaram Shahi.