Further Personal Information
Sport Specific Information
|When and where did you begin this sport?
||He began playing badminton at age eight at Dharmasoka College in Ambalangoda, Sri Lanka.
|Why this sport?
||His father Louie, a national badminton player and coach, introduced him to the sport. "My father took me to watch some matches and even coaching sessions for his players when I was very young. That made badminton my passion from an early age. I played cricket at U15 level but I decided to try and master the sport of badminton and have played it ever since."
||He trains six hours a day, six days a week.
|Memorable sporting achievement
||Competing in singles at the Olympic Games in 2012 and 2016, and reaching the round of 16 at the 2012 Games in London. (dailynews.lk, 12 Oct 2017; Athlete, 09 Aug 2016; dailynews.lk, 14 Jun 2021)
|Most influential person in career
||His parents. (dailynews.lk, 12 Oct 2017)
|Hero / Idol
||US boxer Muhammad Ali, US basketball player Michael Jordan. (dailynews.lk, 12 Oct 2017)
||In his attempts to qualify for the 2008 Olympic Games, he fell ill because of overtraining and spent more than two months in hospital recovering. (sundaytimes.lk, 26 Feb 2012)
In 2006 he suffered an ankle injury that prevented him from training for six months. (sundayobserver.lk, 23 Dec 2007)
|Awards and honours
||He was Sri Lanka's flag bearer at the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games in London. (olympic.org, 27 Jul 2012)
||He has played cricket at national junior level in Sri Lanka. (dailynews.lk, 21 Jul 2016)
||His brothers Diluka and Dinuka have both represented Sri Lanka in badminton. Dinuka placed fifth in the singles event at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, QLD, Australia, while Diluka competed at the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar. His father Louie has played and coached badminton at national level, while his brother Chamika has played both badminton and cricket at U19 international level. (SportsDeskOnline, 28 Apr 2018; espncricinfo.com, 13 Mar 2014; sundaytimes.lk, 26 Feb 2012)
He plans to retire from badminton after competing at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. In 2017 he spoke about his plans for a career after badminton, but said he is not planning to work as a badminton coach. "Frankly, I don't like coaching. It will be a totally new career after I quit playing badminton. I will go into partnership with two others to mine gems. Sri Lanka is well known for gems and there is good money in this business." (badmintonasia.org, 26 Apr 2017; island.lk, 22 Feb 2021)
In April 2018 he was named as a member of the Commonwealth Games Federation [CGF] Athletes Advisory Commission. (insidethegames.biz, 03 Apr 2018)