Sri Lanka cricket board suspended by ICC over 'government interference' | Cricket - Hindustan Times
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Sri Lanka cricket board suspended by ICC over 'government interference'

Nov 10, 2023 08:41 PM IST

The Sri Lanka cricket board on Friday was suspended by the ICC.

The International Cricket Council has suspended Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) on Friday on account of ‘government interference’. The suspension of the cricket board came merely a day after Sri Lanka's last group match in the 2023 World Cup, where the side won only two of nine matches.

The Sri Lanka Cricket board. (File)
The Sri Lanka Cricket board. (File)

“The ICC Board met today and determined that Sri Lanka Cricket is in serious breach of its obligations as a Member, in particular, the requirement to manage its affairs autonomously and ensure that there is no government interference in the governance, regulation and/or administration of cricket in Sri Lanka,” a release by cricket's governing body stated.

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“The conditions of the suspension will be decided by the ICC Board in due course.”

Troubles in the Sri Lankan cricket board began soon after the side's disastrous 302-run defeat to India at the 2023 World Cup, where it was bowled out for merely 55. Soon after the loss, the sports minister sacked the entire cricket board, further deepening the crisis situation. Sri Lanka Cricket, however, was soon reinstated by the court of appeal.

On Thursday, a joint government and opposition resolution in parliament demanded the resignation of the SLC's management, according to news agency PTI.

The government, which is split over the minister's decision to sack the SLC board of management, came out with a report, recommending a brand new constitution for the governing body with a new voting structure to appoint office bearers.

Interestingly, Sri Lanka's chief selector, Pramodaya Wickramasinghe had earlier alleged “outside conspiracy” over the side's dismal World Cup campaign. Soon after landing at the airport, Wickramasinghe, a member of the winning team in 1996 edition of the tournament, said, "Give me two days to disclose everything about it. This was the result of a conspiracy from outside," as quoted by PTI.

Sri Lanka endured a tough outing in the 2023 World Cup, managing to defeat only Netherlands and England in the tournament. The 1996 champions were marred by a series of injuries before, and through the tournament, forcing replacements outside the original squad. In fact, the side's skipper Dasun Shanaka also faced an injury during the tournament, leading to a change of captaincy mid-way through the campaign as Kusal Mendis took over the reins.

Sri Lanka are currently ninth in the points table and their final standing will depend on the other results in the group stage.

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