Thurstan Tennis

Thurstan Tennis

About Tennis History

Tennis at Thurstan commenced during the period of late Mr M.D Gunawardeena in 1963 with able backing from Mr. Joe Frenando who was the vice principal. Both these gentlemen were tennis players of repute during their youth. Due to their enthusiasm they were able to tap influential parents and one such was late Mr. Erick Rajapakse who was then the president of the SLTA. Mr. Erick Rajapaksa's 2 children Rohan and Tito to date remain as two of the finest tennis players produced by Thurstan. The first tennis court to Thurstan college was donate by Mr. L.G Seebert, father of distinguished old boy Mr. Bathiya Seebert.

Mr. Rohan Rajapakse captained Thurstan's first ever tennis team at the prestigious public school tourney and later went on to become the junior national champion. Some of the others who emerged during this era were, Sarath and Ayal Jayathilaka, Mahinda Senevirathana , Ravindra De livera, Late Devinda Walgampitiya, Dinuke Abegunewardena, Ajith Serasinghe, Malinda Ratnayka and Dr. Dilip De Silva to name of few. Sarath, Mahinda, Dinuke and Malinda continue to be in active tennis by representing their respective clubs.

Mr. Gunawardena's good work was continued the after by Mr P.M Jayathilaka who was instrumental in obtaining the services of the late Melville Grenier and Nevill Senarathana (another old Thurstanite now a full time professional coach in UK). The annual tennis social and the dual with Royal college Colombo 7 were much looked after events at this stage

Following a lengthy period of inactivation Thurstan tennis was reactivated once again during the period of principal Mr. R.D.M.P Weerathunga, with Rohan Rajapakse and Dinko Abeygunewardena ( then SLTA assistance secretary) throwing their full weight to give birth to old Thurstanite's tennis club (OTTC) annual inter house tennis tournament and the annul dual with Trinity College Kandy for the Erick Rajapakse trophy. Services rendered by Erick Rajapakse and Co. Ltd, in this events are noted with appreciation . Yet another significant feature during this period was the donation of another tennis court by Mr. Palitha Dalpatatadu a live wire behind the OTTC.

During the late 90s OTTC played an active part in the SLTA inter club tennis tournaments with players in the caliber of Dinuke Abeygunawardena, Mahinda Seneviratne, Priya Paranawithana, Bathiya Seebert, Milinda Rathnayaka, Anil Weerakkody, Palitha Dalpatatadu and Sirosha Gunathilaka doing the honors

Tennis is one of most active sports played at Thurstan College with more than 100 students attending practices every week. Three tennis courts, tennis playing principal, willing support from tennis loving old boys is a luxury most school boys in other school do not enjoy.