SportsMain article: Sport in Sri Lanka
While the national sport in Sri Lanka is volleyball, by far the most popular sport in the country is cricket. Rugby union also enjoys extensive popularity, as do athletics, football (soccer) and tennis. Sri Lanka's schools and colleges regularly organise sports and athletics teams, competing on provincial and national levels.
The Sri Lanka national cricket team achieved considerable success beginning in the 1990s, rising from underdog status to winning the 1996 Cricket World Cup. They also became the runners up of the Cricket World Cup in 2007, 2011. and of the ICC World Twenty20 in 2009 and 2012. Former Sri Lankan off-spinner, Muttiah Muralitharan has been rated as the greatest Test match bowler ever by Wisden Cricketers' Almanack. Sri Lanka has won the Asia Cup in 1986, 1997, 2004 and 2008. Current world records for highest team score in all three formats of the game are also held by Sri Lanka. The country co-hosted the Cricket World Cup in 1996, 2011 and have hosted the 2012 ICC World Twenty20. They lost to the West Indies by 36 runs.
Sri Lankans have won two medals at Olympic Games, one silver, by Duncan White at 1948 London Olympics for men's 400 metres hurdles and one silver by Susanthika Jayasinghe at 2000 Sydney Olympics for women's 200 metres. In 1973, Mohammed Lafir won the World Billiards Championship, highest feat of a Sri Lankan in a Cue sport. Aquatic sports such as boating, surfing, swimming, kitesurfing and scuba diving on the coast, the beaches and backwaters attract a large number of Sri Lankans and foreign tourists. There are two styles of martial arts native to Sri Lanka, Cheena di and Angampora.
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Famous quotes containing the word sports:
“It was so hard to pry this door open, and if I mess up I know the people behind me are going to have it that much harder. Because then theres living proof. They can sit around and say, See? It doesnt work. I dont want to be their living proof.”
—Gayle Gardner, U.S. sports reporter. As quoted in Sports Illustrated, p. 87 (June 17, 1991)
“There be some sports are painful, and their labor
Delight in them sets off. Some kinds of baseness
Are nobly undergone, and most poor matters
Point to rich ends.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)
“...I didnt come to this with any particular cachet. I was just a person who grew up in the United States. And when I looked around at the people who were sportscasters, I thought they were just people who grew up in the United States, too. So I thought, Why cant a woman do it? I just assumed everyone else would think it was a swell idea.”
—Gayle Gardner, U.S. sports reporter. As quoted in Sports Illustrated, p. 85 (June 17, 1991)