Pallakelle incidents were ‘the last straw’ – SLC selectors

Pallakelle incidents were ‘the last straw’ – SLC selectors

August 30, 2017   11:34 am

The Sanath Jayasuriya-led Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) selection panel, which decided to quit at the end of the ongoing series, today accused “interested parties with malicious intent” of damaging and hindering the sport through undue criticism and false allegations.

They say that the damage caused by the actions of these disgruntled elements seeking to destabilize the organization is widespread and brings to disrepute the glorious game lauded throughout history as a gentleman’s game.

“The heartbreaking incidents of unruly behavior we witnessed at Pallakelle last Sunday were the last straw for us, and we feel that it will serve this sport we love better if we step down, rather than allow the influence of these dark elements to poison the minds of our people who have always been the greatest supporters in the world,” the selection committee said. 

In a statement, the panel said that they have been hindered greatly by a spate of injuries and fluke incidents that have seen them restricted in the availability of players that fit into the required composition against a particular opponent.

However, the selection committee said they have nonetheless fulfilled their national duty to the very best of their ability given the resource pool available.

“We leave with tears in eyes, but with our heads held high as we know that Sri Lanka Cricket is working to a very defined and strategic plan, building from the foundation upwards, and as with all masterpieces, the results take time to show,” the statement said.


Issuing a special statement through Sri Lanka Cricket, the National Selections Committee comprised of Sanath Jayasuriya (Chairman), Asanka Gurusinha, Romesh Kaluwitharana, Eric Upashantha and Ranjith Madurusinghe state the following;

“We the National Selection Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket have decided after serious consideration and deliberation to resign from our position at the end of the ongoing Indian series.

We wish to state this decision is made in the best interest of the game, which is being damaged and hindered by undue criticism and false allegations instigated by interested parties with malicious intent. This instigation has led to a public outcry, which in both the short and long term is damaging the present and the future of the game by demoralizing the players and creating an unfair, untrue and hurtful image of the team, the coaching staff, the selectors, and the administration.

This is especially saddening when considering the damage that is caused by the actions of these disgruntled elements seeking to destabilize the organization which has been built up over decades by the hard work and dedication of its administrators, is widespread and brings to disrepute this glorious game lauded throughout history as a gentleman’s game.

The heartbreaking incidents of unruly behavior we witnessed at Pallakelle last Sunday were the last straw for us, and we feel that it will serve this sport we love better if we step down, rather than allow the influence of these dark elements to poison the minds of our people who have always been the greatest supporters in the world, and damage not only this great sport, but the reputation of our country, our people and our proud culture.

We have, over the past 15 months, served cricket in Sri Lanka with unmeasured dedication, even at the cost of family and business commitments, and have brought to bear our experience and expertise as past cricketers in every decision we have made. We have been hindered greatly by a spate of injuries and fluke incidents that have seen us restricted in the availability of players that fit into the required composition against a particular opponent, but have nonetheless fulfilled our national duty to the very best of our ability given the resource pool available to us.

We leave with tears in eyes, but with our heads held high as we know that Sri Lanka Cricket is working to a very defined and strategic plan, building from the foundation upwards, and as with all masterpieces, the results take time to show. We have every confidence in the policies adopted by the administration both in selection and in development, and we have no doubt that this rough patch will soon be over so long as this plan is implemented unhindered.

We wish to thank the team for giving us their very best in every game they play, and to remind them to believe in themselves and their abilities. We wish to thank the President, the board and the support staff at SLC who have supported us unwaveringly, and we wish to thank the honourable Minister for believing in us, and in our plan even when things looked bleak. Last but not least, we wish to thank every single Sri Lankan who loves this game as much, and even sometimes maybe more than we do, for their undying support and passion, and to remind them, it’s always darkest, before the dawn”

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