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World Cup: Ex-skipper Hashan Tillekaratne accuses Lanka team of match-fixing, questions selection for final match

first_imgHashan Tillekaratne, who played 83 Tests and 200 ODIs for Sri Lanka, made the sensational claim while appearing in a TV show.India’s triumph in the ICC World Cup earlier this month has come under the match-fixing cloud after a former Sri Lankan captain’s accusation that the unlawful practice has been rampant in the island nation’s team. Appearing on a TV talk show, cricketer-turned-politician Hashan Tillekaratne raised his doubts about the selection of the Sri Lankan team for the World Cup finals. The Lankan team had made as many as four changes for the vital match against India, held on April 2 in Mumbai. Tillekaratne, who played as many as 83 Tests and 200 ODIs in his 16-year international cricket career, questioned the logic behind making extensive changes for such an important match. Maintaining that he did not think that the final match was fixed, Tillekaratne said that it was unfair to have replaced spinner Ajantha Mendis and all-rounder Chamara Silva. Tillekaratne claimed that match-fixing has been a problem in Sri Lankan cricket since 1992. He said he knew all the people responsible for it and would expose them soon. He alleged that every time the matter of match-fixing was brought up, it was quietly swept under the carpet by corrupt administrators. He alleged that money was exchanged to hush up the issue.Earlier, former captain Arjuna Ranatunga had also raised concerns about the manner in which cricket was being run in his country. A day after the visitors lost to India in the finals, Ranatunga told Headlines Today that “mafia” had got into Sri Lankan cricket and that corrupt administrators were running the game.”When we won the World Cup, we had a very honest, very good cricket precedent. But the business mafia got involved in cricket and they knew that the money is there and all unwanted… some of them were involved in bookies, they come from bookie families, some of them ordinary business people who wanted to get into cricket to create a name,” said Ranatunga, who led his side to win the coveted cup in 1996.”Even now what they do is, they appoint wrong people to run cricket. They enjoy the comfort, they enjoy the money that comes from cricket… and I tell you, lot of money has gone under the carpet. I think government has to be blamed,” he said.advertisementlast_img read more