Sanath grilled over President’s directive
By Marlon Fernandopulle
Former Sri Lanka Captain Sanath Jayasuriya was grilled by Chief Executive Officer Duleep Mendis and the Chairman of Selectors Lalith Kaluperuma on Friday and sent to a leading Private Hospital in Colombo for an independent analysis on his injured shoulder following a request by President Mahinda Rajapakse to inquire into the player’s inclusion for the one dayers against India and his omission from the test squad.

As the Sunday Times inquired from top SLC officials, confusing theories emerged with Chief Executive Officer Duleep Mendis denying that there was any request from the top to probe into Jayasuriya’s inclusion and omission. “No one has requested SLC to inquire into Sanath’s inclusion and omission”. However when The Sunday Times asked the CEO as to why the SLC released a statement signed by Chairman of Selectors Lalith Kaluperuma pertaining to the matter on Friday evening he replied saying, “That was done due to the various media reports that had appeared in the past on Sanath’s inclusion and omission”.

Meanwhile Chairman of Selectors Lalith Kaluperuma speaking to The Sunday Times confirmed issuing a statement to the CEO of SLC on the matter upon his request. In his statement Kaluperuma has outlined the sequence of events that led to Sanath’s inclusion for the one dayers despite being injured and his omission later from the test squad to India. According to Kaluperuma this statement which was given to the CEO may have been released to the media.
The Sunday Times investigation has revealed that President Mahinda Rajapakse has requested a top official of the Sports Ministry to get a report from the SLC on the Sanath Jayasuriya saga. It was after this request that SLC officials rushed Sanath Jayasuriya to the Cricket Board headquarters and questioned him on his injury and immediately sent him to a leading Private Hospital for an independent inquiry.

Further investigations by the Sunday Times have revealed that the former Sri Lanka Captain who suffered a freak injury while reluctantly indulging in Water Sports four days before the team’s departure should never have toured India for the one day series. Jayasuriya sat out of the last practice game three days before the team’s departure due to pain on his injured shoulder and was seen clutching his shoulder at the last practice session, just one day before the team left. However Jayasuriya’s actual status of the injury was hushed up and not revealed to the SLC officials or to the Chairman of Selectors. This, the Sunday Times learns was done by another team official who incidentally was responsible for Jayasuriya taking part in Water Sports on that fateful day. Incidentally, the Chairman of Selectors only learned about Sanath’s injury after reading the newspaper reports.

As the SLC will now have to send a report to His Excellency the President one hopes that nothing will be swept under the carpet and if any officials have neglected their duties or acted with vested interest they should pay the price for their actions.


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