ICC asks Sri Lanka to hold elections before October

International Cricket Council - ICC

The ICC has urged Sri Lanka’s sports ministry to hold Sri Lanka Cricket elections before the next ICC board meeting in October, suggesting “further action” may be taken against SLC “in the event of further non-compliance”.

SLC, whose ICC voting rights remain suspended while the government-appointed interim committee is in charge, has played down the threat of further sanctions. The ICC also still holds payments due to SLC in escrow, but has been periodically releasing funds as SLC requests them.

“The ICC Board received an update on Sri Lanka Cricket and reiterated its earlier position that the appointment of an Interim Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) by the Government of Sri Lanka was a breach of the ICC’s constitution,” an ICC release said. “The ICC Board urged the Sports Minister of Sri Lanka to hold free and fair elections before the next ICC Board meeting in October, adding that the ICC reserved the right to take further action against the SLC in the event of further non-compliance.”

However, SLC elections appear unlikely to be held in the next four months with sports minister Navin Dissanayake having announced that they were scheduled for January 2016. Interim committee chairman Sidath Wettimuny suggested the ICC would be satisfied with this time frame.

“The ICC board said they would like us to hold elections by October, but by latest – January,” Wettimuny said. “The meeting went off O.K. We explained our situation and the ICC explained their technicality.”

SLC’s interim committee is in the midst of designing a domestic structure that aims to take cricket into the provinces more effectively, and an election before October would put much of this work at risk. The board is also looking at inviting ICC chairman N Srinivasan to Sri Lanka during the forthcoming Test series with India, in August and September, as a means of maintaining cordial relations with the ICC.

ESPN Sports Media Ltd.