With immediate effect, the International Cricket Council (ICC) Board has suspended Sri Lanka Cricket’s membership.
According to today’s ICC Board meeting, Sri Lanka Cricket is in serious breach of its obligations as a member, specifically the requirement that it manage its affairs autonomously and ensure that the government does not interfere with the governance, regulation, or administration of cricket in Sri Lanka.
It will take the ICC Board some time to decide what the suspension conditions are.
Sri Lankan Cricket Board Suspended by ICC
Sports minister Roshan Ranasinghe accused the board of siphoning off millions of dollars after the parliament asked the board to resign. Later, the ICC board will decide the conditions of the suspension, according to its statement. Sri Lanka is hosting the Under 19 World Cup in January, but it was unclear whether the indefinite suspension would affect that event.
According to an official source, the executive committee will meet on Saturday in an emergency meeting. The board had no immediate comment.
“They will try to work out a way forward,” the source said. The upcoming 50-over Under-19 World Cup is of primary concern. Loss of hosting rights will be disastrous.
The 16-nation Under-19 World Cup was about to take place in Sri Lanka, and the country’s board had approved the release of substantial funds to renovate four locations in the city, of Colombo.
Sri Lanka’s cricket board – the richest sporting organization in the bankrupt island nation – is facing a crisis following last week’s humiliating World Cup defeat to India. On Thursday, the Sri Lankan parliament unanimously demanded the resignation of Sri Lanka Cricket’s elected board members.
In response to the non-binding resolution of the parliament, the board has not yet responded. Sajith Premadasa, leader of the opposition, called Thursday’s resolution a “historic resolution that sends a message to the world that Sri Lanka has united to defend cricket.”
A two-week hearing is scheduled for next week following the board’s sacking by the sports minister on Monday, only to be reinstated the following day by the Court of Appeal.
Political interference is prohibited by the ICC, which has previously suspended Sri Lanka.
As of Friday, Ranasinghe said he hoped there would be no ICC sanctions against the local board.
Ranasinghe said in parliament, “I am confident that we can settle matters with the ICC.”