Colombo: Sri Lanka’s sports minister revoked on Tuesday the sacking of the country’s cricket board over allegations of corruption, in an effort to end its suspension by the International Cricket Council.
“I signed a gazette to revoke the decision appointing an interim committee for Sri Lanka Cricket, aiming to lift our ICC suspension,” Harin Fernando said on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Fernando said he had also asked the ICC for its “observations” on an audit report into alleged corruption by the board during the T20 World Cup last year in Australia.
Fernando’s predecessor Roshan Ranasinghe sacked the elected board in November and appointed an interim panel headed by Arjuna Ranatunga, Sri Lanka’s 1996 World Cup-winning skipper.
The ICC suspended Sri Lanka as a result, saying the board had failed to prevent political interference in the administration of the game.
The controversy over corruption in the board, the richest sporting body in the otherwise bankrupt nation, led to the sacking of Ranasinghe late last month.
Zimbabwe’s tour of Sri Lanka for white series comprising three ODIs and as many as T20Is in January next year with a three-game ODI series starting from January 6 followed by a three-game T20I series between January 14-18.
This will be Zimbabwe’s first bilateral visit to Island nation since 2022. Zimbabwe have shown good form against the Lions in recent years, including a stunning 3-2 ODI series win during their tour of Sri Lanka in 2017.
Sri Lanka will look to pick up the pieces after a disappointing ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 campaign, during which they failed to qualify for the knockout stage and finished in the second-last place.
The upcoming game time is set to be invaluable for the Sri Lankan team, especially with the T20 World Cup on the horizon. They have a packed schedule, including T20I series against Afghanistan (three games at home) and Bangladesh (three games away) in early 2024.
Zimbabwe, on the other hand, will be hoping to lift themselves after a string of disappointing results. They failed to qualify for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 after being unable to secure a top-two finish in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Africa Region Qualifier. This was followed by a 1-2 series loss to Ireland at home.
ODI series schedule
January 6, 1st ODI, RPICS Colombo
January 8, 2nd ODI, RPICS Colombo
January 11, 3rd ODI, RPICS Colombo
T20I series schedule
January 14, 1st T20I, RPICS Colombo
January 16, 2nd T20I, RPICS Colombo
January 18, 3rd T20I, RPICS Colombo