The last thing that the Sri Lankan team needed at this point in time was a ban from ICC.
One can say that the Sri Lankan team have hit rock bottom again.
Despite performing admirably well in the qualifiers of the Men’s World Cup, they were not quite up to the mark in the World Cup. The last few years have been a roller coaster ride for the Sri Lankan team, as they won the Asia Cup 2022, defeating teams like India and Pakistan.
Just when everyone started to think that this Sri Lankan team would be successful in rebuilding the reputation, they had during the time of Sanath Jayasuriya, Arjuna Ranatunga, Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara, the worst has happened with them as the ICC has decided to impose a ban on the Sri Lankan cricket due to the intervention of the government.
The team under Dasun Shanaka have done extremely well in the last two years. He was well supported by players like Wanindu Hasaranga, Maheesh Theekshana, Kusal Mendis, and Charith Asalanka. They even defeated England and Netherlands in the ongoing World Cup but failed to create an impact as they missed out on a few players due to injuries before the tournament.
Let’s have a look at the story behind this ban.
There have been some issues in the government of Sri Lanka about which everyone is well aware. Due to the intervention of the Sri Lankan government in the country’s cricket body, the International Cricket Council have decided to impose a ban on the Sri Lankan cricket board.
The ICC suggests that no government is allowed to intervene in the country’s cricket board, and that’s what happened with the Sri Lankan cricket board.
The government sacked everybody who was a part of the cricket governing body of the country and formed a committee which was led by the former cricketer Arjuna Ranatunga, until the appointment of new dedicated personnel. The government decided to intervene after the team’s poor performance in the ongoing World Cup 2023.
But now, the intervention has not favoured anyone due to the ban imposed by the ICC.
The Sri Lanka players were still in India and were playing their last league game, which was against the BlackCaps. And this news would have been a disheartening one for the players, who put in all the hard work to get to this stage.
For players like Dilshan Madushanka, Dunith Wellalage, and Sadeera Samarawickrama, who were playing their first World Cup, it’s not something that they can do something to rectify this, they will feel a sense of helplessness and unsupported by their own government.
Moreover, it has been confirmed that Sri Lanka will not be participating in the Champions Trophy 2025 as they failed to finish among the top eight which is the qualification bar for the Champions Trophy.
However, the consequences of this ban and how things for Sri Lankan cricket will go from now on are yet to be discussed.
Even the upcoming Under-19 World Cup 2024 is supposed to be hosted by the Sri Lankan Cricket Borad, but with this ban, they would not be getting the hosting rights and ICC will be stating all related consequences in their next meeting about the concerned matter.
Well, this sheds light on how the teams and boards should be supported and not interfere in any sort of thing with the cricket governing body of the country. For else, there’ll be consequences, though not necessarily for an Afghanistan and Pakistan. How and why these two exciting subcontinental forces, one among them a World Cup winner, are hanging out completely unscathed by ICC reprimands does make for an interesting case study.
feature image– Hardcore Cricket fans, Facebook