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Sri Lanka cricket in 'crisis': Aluthgamage

Sri Lanka's sports minister on Monday blasted the national cricket team's recent performances, saying the side was riven by politics and in "crisis". Mahindananda Aluthgamage vowed to deliver a stern lecture to the players when they return later this month from their tour of South Africa, where they last week lost the Test series 2-1.


"The Sri Lanka cricket team is in a crisis situation. It is very unfortunate," Aluthgamage told reporters in Colombo. "The team is not clicking together off-field and it has shown in the results on the field."

"Once the team returns, I plan to meet them," Aluthgamage said. "I feel there is a lot of internal politics within the team that is spilling over to the cricket pitch."

Since the retirement of bowling star Muttiah Muralitharan in July 2010, Sri Lanka have won only one Test match, though they did reach the final of the one-day World Cup last year.


Sri Lanka will now play five one-day internationals in South Africa starting on Wednesday, before heading to a tri-series tournament in Australia which also includes India.

The government has often been accused of meddling in the sport and recent uncontested elections for the cricket board were mired in allegations of interference.

Aluthgamage's comments came after Sri Lanka skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan blamed his side's inconsistent results on the island's weak domestic scene.

"It is very difficult to find good cricketers. We have to correct our domestic structure. Coming from our club cricket to international cricket is a huge difference," he said after losing the Test series.

Some players have complained about months of unpaid wages as the Sri Lanka board struggles with debts of US$69 million after building two new venues and revamping a third ground for the World Cup. (Source: AFP)

Posted on 2012-01-10 15:13:05
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QUESTION?

Should Dilshan have continued until Cricket World Cup 2019?

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THE DAY'S QUOTE

“That was pathetic. No excuse at all. The whole team is responsible. Whoever the captain is, we have to back him and try and support him. The captain has to do so many other stuff. All the 11 guys must back him and support him.” “We have addressed the issue of finishing off the overs on time in the past as well, but it cropped up again. It’s so unfortunate to see Upul going out as he is a crucial player in our set up. He batted well against South Africa and it’s so unfortunate. This can’t happen again,” - Angelo Mathews

FEEDBACK/COMMENTS

Cricket is a game of fine margins and Mathews is set to be a modern great. Hang in their Angie, this team can achieve something on this tour. Thirimane and the youngsters form was a real positive. Prasad was missed. Chameera should be persisted with. If Bairstow was our early outcome could have been very different.

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