Sri Lanka to probe 2011 World Cup loss against In­dia

Muscat Daily - - WORLD -

Colombo, Sri Lanka - Sri Lanka's sports min­is­ter gave his sup­port on Wed­nes­day for an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the coun­try's con­tro­ver­sial 2011 World Cup loss against In­dia, amid fresh al­le­ga­tions of match-fix­ing.

The South Asian na­tion lost the World Cup de­cider by six wick­ets at Wankhede sta­dium in Mumbai, stun­ning the cricket-mad is­land. Then Sri Lanka skip­per Ku­mar San­gakkara re­signed soon af­ter the match. Pres­sure has since been mount­ing for an in­quiry into the shock de­feat, with a former cricket cap­tain and a pre­vi­ous sports min­is­ter go­ing pub­lic with their sus­pi­cions that Sri Lanka de­lib­er­ately lost the match.

"The al­le­ga­tions merit an in­ves­ti­ga­tion," Dayasiri Jayasek­era told re­porters in Colombo.

"As soon as I get a writ­ten com­plaint, I will start a probe."

Sri Lanka, bat­ting first, scored 274-6 off 50 overs and ap­peared in a com­mand­ing po­si­tion when In­dian su­per­star Sachin Ten­dulkar was caught for 18. In­dia turned the game dra­mat­i­cally thanks partly to poor field­ing and bowl­ing by Sri Lanka.

The sports min­is­ter at the time Mahin­dananda Aluthga­m­age has raised fresh con­cerns, telling lo­cal me­dia there were "sev­eral dis­turb­ing fac­tors about that game".

Four last-minute changes were made to the Sri Lankan side with­out prior ap­proval be­ing sought from the sports min­is­ter, breach­ing con­ven­tion.

"Then there are also ques­tions about the be­hav­iour of a very se­nior player. Dur­ing the match, in­struc­tions sent to the field were ig­nored," Aluthga­m­age said, with­out nam­ing the player in ques­tion.

The former min­is­ter said he launched an in­quiry af­ter the match, but the in­ves­ti­ga­tion was scut­tled.

His con­cerns fol­lowed quick on the heels of com­ments from former Sri Lanka skip­per Ar­juna Ranatunga, who last Fri­day de­manded an in­quiry be held to ex­pose the "dirt" on dodgy crick­eters.

Last year, the In­ter­na­tional Cricket Coun­cil im­posed a three-year ban on a top Sri Lankan of­fi­cial Jayananda War­naweera for fail­ing to co­op­er­ate with an anti-cor­rup­tion in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

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