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Mahindananda’s comments could be attempt to rob Sanga of ICC chairmanship: Ajith

Kumar Sangakkara – Image credit: NAPARAZZI/Flickr

ECONOMYNEXT – Attempts may be under way to prevent Sri Lanka Cricket captain Kumar Sangakkara from being appointed the next chairman of the International Cricket Council (ICC), former MP Ajith P Perera said.

There is reason to suspect that the controversial remarks by Former Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage about the 2011 Cricket World Cup could be an attempt to prevent Sangakkara from securing the ICC chairmanship, Perera told reporters today.

Aluthgamage recently told a private television station that the 2011 world cup final between Sri Lanka and India was fixed in India’s favour.

Noting that Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa had said not to take Aluthgamage’s allegation seriously, Perera said: “Mahindananda usually doesn’t tell the truth; but in case he is, even if it is 10 years after the fact, it’s a very serious issue.”

Perera, a contestant for the Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB) at the upcoming parliamentary election, called for an investigation on Aluthgamage’s allegation in order to protect Sri Lanka’s reputation and the future of a sport that brought the island international fame and fortune.

“In case his allegation is not true, then it raises a serious question as to why such an allegation was made nearly 10 years later,” said Perera.

“We had a good team in 2011. But sometimes, even the best teams get defeated. Allegations of this nature must be made with evidence,” he added.

Sangakkara has brought honour to the nation by being appointed the first non-British President of the prestigious Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) and being reappointed for a second consecutive year, said Perera, adding that the cricket captain is set to be the next chairman of the ICC.

“There is a widely held belief among cricket administrators around the world that Sangakkara should be made the next ICC chairman, due to his spotless record in cricket as well as his skills in administration. This allegation could be to the benefit of his competitors to the post,” he added.

Aluthgamage’s explosive allegation sent ripples across the cricket as well as political establishments, with current Sports Minister Dullas Alahepperuma ordering an investigation by a special investigative unit of the police. The ICC too announced that they would be in touch with Aluthgamage on the contents of his statement.

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With respect to the position of the next ICC chairman, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) announced earlier this month that it was ready to extend its support to Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Saurav Ganguly or any other Indian candidate.

SLC did, however, previously said it would promote Sangakkara for the position, but Sangakkara announced that he had no interest in being promoted by anyone. (Colombo/Jun30/2020)

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