Aravinda De Silva, Sri Lankan cricket legend and the Chairman of Selection committee at the time of 2011 World cup, has urged the International Cricket Council (ICC), Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) and Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) to investigate the fixing allegations made by Sri Lankan minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage.
Lanka’s 1996 world cup hero said he is completely shocked and extremely hurt by the fixing allegation of the 2011 World Cup. De Silva vehemently refuted minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage’s comments as ‘lies’. He has also urged the BCCI to investigate the matter and nail the lies of Lankan minister for the sake of God of cricket – Sachin Tendulkar.
“Just like we cherished our World Cup victory, players like Sachin (Tendulkar) cherish these moments for the rest of their lives. I think in the interest of Sachin and the millions of cricket fans across India, it’s the duty of the Indian government and their cricket board to initiate an impartial inquiry to see whether they have won a fixed World Cup,” he said.
De Silva said he is even ready to risk his life to travel to India during the current lockdown period to help any investigation being carried out.
“When serious allegations like these are being made, it affects a lot of people. In this case not only us, the selectors, the players and the team management but Indian cricketers who deservingly won the world title. We need to clear this once and for all for the greater good of the game we love,” he added.
Arvinda asks – are the fingers being pointed at the selectors ?
In the 2011 World Cup finals between India and Sri Lanka, due to injuries team management had made 4 changes for the finals. After all-rounder Angelo Mathews was ruled out with an injury, the selectors with the consultation of the team management brought in Chamara Kapugedara in place of Chamara Silva, Suraj Randiv for Ajantha Mendis, Nuwan Kulasekara for Rangana Herath and Thisara Perera for Angelo Mathews.
Though the minister has not mentioned names of those involved in the alleged fix, it seems he was pointing his fingers at the selectors who made four changes ahead of the title clash. The former sports minister said his approval was not sought for such replacements.
“We have followed the proper procedure in the selection process. The selections are not done by the selectors alone. It includes the coach, captain, vice-captain, sometimes we invite some senior cricketers, manager, the secretary of the board, all of whom except the invited players give their approval by signing a book. These are all flimsy allegations and if he had any doubt he should have gone to ICC ACU then,” said Aravinda.
“Here is a man who has no reputation or credibility trying to cast wild allegations at all those who were involved with that game. I am ready to face any inquiry. But these liars should not be spared. As I said they are tarnishing our hard-earned reputations,” he said.