Arjuna Writes To President About ‘Dismal’ State Of Sri Lanka Cricket: Suggests A Commission Is Set Up To Investigate Wrongdoing

Former World Cup cricket captain and current Petroleum Resources Development Minister Arjuna Ranatunga has fired off a four-page missive to President Maithripala Sirisena, highlighting what he has termed the ‘dismal’ state of Sri Lanka cricket.

“I believe people elected me as a politician, not just because my family is linked to politics but also because of the respect and honor
I brought the sport,” the Minister said, reminding the President of his 1996 World Cup victory.

“As a cricket player, as a citizen of this country, and man who unconditionally loves the sport, I cannot remain silent when the game of cricket is being pushed to the brink,” he said, drawing attention the policies driven by ‘gamblers’ within the cricket administration.

He pointed out that the new government had come into power ‘on the promise of establishing rule of law, the independence of the judiciary and democratic ideals’ and that ethos must seep into the highly politicized cricket administration as well.

Referring to Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) President Thilanga Sumathipala, the Petroleum Resources Development Minister said it was no secret that Sumathipala’s family was involved ‘book-keeping’ and other forms of gambling.

“There is a clause within the Sports Act that holds that no person linked to gambling, selling cricket equipment or with ties to the media can hold office, he said, “despite this, Sumathipala was elected as President in direct contravention of the law.”

He said three successive Sports Ministers had rejected Sumathipala’s nomination in keeping with Sports law, but the present Sport Minister and his cronies had approved Sumathipala as President, signaling the downfall of Sri Lanka Cricket.

Volunteering his ‘sincere commitment’ to the sport, the Petroleum Resources Development Minister entreated the President to change cricket’s administration body and to set up a commission or committee to look into the ailing sport.