Udeni Kiridena, a name synonymous in the boxing fraternity has done Sri Lanka proud with his selection as a referee/judge at the Rio Olympic Games – 2016, by the International Boxing Association (AIBA).
Kiridena’s achievement according to sources is an honour to our country as he is one among the best International boxing referees selected through stringent criteria. He is an old boy of Trinity College, Kandy who began his boxing career at the tender age of eleven.
Following in his father’s footsteps, he secured the pin weight title in his very first Tournament in the Central province. The sport remained a continued passion for Kiridena who went from strength to strength and in the long run it served him well which saw him reach the highest rungs of the sport. He won in his weight category at the T B Jayah Cup, Stubbs shield and at the Junior National Championships and was adjudged the ‘Best Boxer’ at the Stubbs Shield (Sri Lanka schools championships) in 1982.
Kiridena received the coveted “Boxing Lion” at Trinity in 1982 and went on to lead the Trinity boxing team in 1983. Under his leadership Trinity College, bagged the Stubbs Shield after a lapse of three decades. He was coached by the veterans Bobby Jayaweera, S B Kiridena, Sarath Jayasinghe and Leslie Handunge.
After he hung up his gloves, Kiridena got involved in training the Air Lanka Boxing team. Thereafter, he was involved in the administration of the Boxing Association of Sri Lanka serving as the Treasurer of the Boxing Referees and Judges Association for a period of 5 years and later went on to serve as Asst. Secretary, Vice President and finally as the President of the Boxing Association of Sri Lanka during the period 2009/2010.
In 1993, he passed the National Boxing Referees & Judges examination with distinction and in 2002 became a Continental Referee/Judge, topping the batch. Kiridena qualified as an International Judge in 2006 and was elevated as an International Referee /Judge in 2008. He became a 3 star International Boxing Referee in 2010, enabling him to officiate at top international tournaments around the world and in 2014 he successfully passed the AIBA Pro-Boxing / World Series Boxing examination held at the AIBA Academy in Kazakhstan.
It was Mr Donald Munasinghe who is responsible for mentoring him as a boxing referee and Mr & Mrs Herbert Embuldeniya who guided him on finer points of officiating at the international level.
In his illustrious career as a boxing referee and judge, Kiridena has officiated in many boxing tournaments around the world including APB/WSB Olympic trials, European Olympic Trials, World Championships, Junior World Championships, Youth Olympic Games, Women’s World Junior & Youth Championships, Asian Games and Commonwealth Championships to name a few.
In the year 2015, he became the first Sri Lankan to Referee/Judge at AIBA Pro-Boxing events and continues to be the only Sri Lankan as at date to officiate at this level.
By profession, he is a qualified Chartered Insurer and an Associate Member of the Chartered Insurance Institute of the UK. A Senior Associate of the Australian & New Zealand Institute of Insurance & Finance and also an Associate Member of the Indian Insurance Institute. Udeni Kiridena is currently the Chief Executive Officer of the Sri Lanka Insurance Institute.Gallery with ID 321 doesn't exist.