Full name: Christine Sonali Merrill
Height: 5'6" (167 cm)
Weight: 126 lbs (57 kg)
Born: August 20, 1987 in Bakersfield, California, United States
Country: Sri Lanka
California-born Christine Sonali Merill took up athletics when she changed high schools as a junior, leaving behind a school that lacked a track to practice on. She had some success at the local and state levels but, after being accepted by the University of California, San Diego and learning that they did not offer athletic scholarships, decided to focus on her mechanical engineering major instead, especially after suffering a knee injury during a basketball game. She was eventually convinced to compete for the school, however, collecting eight All-American honors and winning the 400 metre hurdles event at the Division II National Collegiate Athletic Association as a junior. The following year, 2010, she set a school record in the event and graduated, but decided to continue her pursuit of athletics, spending her own money and free time training while also working as an engineer with a solar turbine company in San Diego. On the basis of her mother’s ancestry, she began competing for Sri Lanka and won a bronze medal in the 400 m hurdles at the 2011 Asian Championships. She also competed at that year’s World Championships, where she was eliminated in the heats. She was then selected as a wild card entrant by Sri Lanka and ran for that nation at the 2012 Summer Olympics, where she finished last in her heat of the 400 m hurdles and was eliminated, despite running her best time of the season. Following the Games she has continued to train in the hopes of competing at the 2016 Olympics.
|2012 Summer||24||London||Athletics||Women's 400 metres Hurdles||Sri Lanka||SRI||9 h5 r1/3|