Protests in Sri Lanka after Sangakkara grilled for 2011 World Cup final match fixing
Protests were held in Sri Lanka after cricket legends, including Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene, were called up for recording statements regarding an investigation over fixing allegations in the 2011 World Cup final. The Youth Alliance of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB), came in support of the players and staged a protest in front of the Sports Ministry.
Kumar Sangakkara the captain of the Sri Lanka team which lost in the 2011 World Cup final, was interrogated more than 8 hours on Thursday at the Police Unit of the Sports Ministry over claims that the match had been fixed. At the same time as he was being questioned, a protest against the investigation was held outside the Sports Ministry’s office.
Sangakkara said he believed that after the investigations are completed, everyone would be able to know the truth of match fixing claims made by Mahindananda Aluthgamage
Sri Lanka has ordered a criminal probe into allegations the 2011 cricket World Cup final was “sold” to India. Nummber of players and officials including Aravinda De Silva and was questioned on the match-fixing claims on the 2011 ICC World Cup by former Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage. former Sri Lanka Cricket Captain Mahela Jayawardena, too, has been summoned to the Special Investigation Unit to record a statement on the same allegations.
The Sports Ministry launched an investigation after former Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage recently claimed that Sri Lanka ‘sold’ the World Cup 2011 final to ensure a victory for India.
Aluthgamage, who was the Minister of Sports at the time, and former captain Aravinda de Silva, who was the selection committee chief, have already provided statements for the investigation while Sri Lanka opener Upul Tharanga on Wednesday became the first player to be grilled.
The youth wing of the Samagi Jana Balawegaya, which organized the protest, said the demonstration was held against the “continuous harassment of Kumar Sangakkara and other cricketers over unsubstantiated match-fixing allegations,” according to newswire.lk.
The party’s Prime Ministerial candidate Sajith Premadasa also tweeted against the investigation.
After starting strongly, Sri Lanka lost the final at Mumbai’s Wankhede stadium by six wickets.
Sri Lanka batted first and scored 6-274 off 50 overs. They appeared in a commanding position when Indian superstar Sachin Tendulkar was out for 18.
But India turned the game dramatically, thanks in part to poor fielding and bowling by Sri Lanka, who were led by Kumar Sangakkara.
Sangakkara had said Aluthgamage should share his allegations with the global governing body the International Cricket Council.
International cricket in Sri Lanka has previously been linked to corruption allegations, including claims of match-fixing ahead of a 2018 Test against England.
Earlier this month, the Sri Lankan cricket board said the ICC was investigating three unnamed ex-players over corruption claims.
Match-fixing was made a criminal offence in November. Offenders face fines of up to 100 million rupees ($555,000) and up to 10 years’ jail.