ICC moves men’s U19 World Cup from Sri Lanka to South Africa | Cricket

The ICC Board on Tuesday shifted the next year’s men’s Under-19 World Cup from Sri Lanka to South Africa, 11 days after the world governing body provisionally suspended the cricket body in the island nation due to government interference.

Sri Lanka's Dilshan Madushanka is being attended by physio during the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup match (PTI)
Sri Lanka’s Dilshan Madushanka is being attended by physio during the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup match (PTI)

In fact it was Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) that had reached out to ICC and notified about the government interference in the running of cricket in the country.

SLC and the Sports Ministry have been at loggerheads for some time. The government has accused SLC officials of being involved in corruption and mismanagement.

“The U19 World Cup has been shifted to South Africa from Sri Lanka due to SLC’s suspension. In fact, participating nations were apprised some days back after SLC got suspended. South Africa hosted the U19 WC in 2020. The decision got approval at ICC Board meeting in Ahmedabad,” an ICC Board member told PTI.

“Sri Lanka’s bilateral and domestic cricket will not be affected by this.”

SLC president Shammi Silva had recently warned that the country could lose the hosting rights of the U19 World Cup, scheduled to be held from January 13 to February 4, if the government’s interference continued.

In a statement released on Monday, SLC had said,” While SLC focuses on resolving the suspension issue, it appears that the minister of sports is pursuing a different agenda through media manipulation without pursuing legal avenues to address the allegations.”

“This raises concerns about its intention to influence public opinion and other stakeholders to achieve its objective of taking control of SLC through the misuse of his powers.

“SLC calls for a fair and unbiased examination of the facts and remains focused on its mission to uphold the integrity of cricket in Sri Lanka and is confident that the truth will prevail in due course.”

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