ICC lauds Sri Lanka for action against offenders

Dubai: The International Cricket Council on Wednesday commended Sri Lankan Cricket Board for taking swift and decisive action in the no-ball controversy and said it is now a closed chapter for the game’s governing body.

“The Spirit of Cricket is a fundamental part of our great sport and it is pleasing to see our Members upholding it in such a decisive manner,” ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat said in a statement.

“This is a clear sign that the notion of fair play is still very important to those who love the game of cricket and we commend SLC on its commitment to that.

“As far as the ICC is concerned it was an unfortunate incident and the matter is now closed,” he added.

ICC’s statement came after SLC cracked the whip on its players by suspending off-spinner Suraj Randiv for one match and imposing a fine on Thillakaratne Dilshan for their role in depriving Indian opener Virender Sehwag a century.

Miffed by the unwanted controversy, the cricket board also reprimanded captain Kumar Sangakkara and has asked him to ensure that repetition of such incidents do not occur in future.

Sehwag was just one short of his 13th ODI hundred when Randiv, who had not bowled a no ball in the Test or ODI series this season, bowled one which was hit by the opener for a six.

However, it did not count because the no ball amounted to India’s winning run leaving Sehwag stranded on an unbeaten 99.

Embarrassed by the ‘no-ball’ controversy, SLC yesterday initiated an inquiry into the incident by team manager Anura Tennekoon even as the bowler and top SLC officials offered apologies to calm the furore.

The apologies prompted the Indian team management to declare the episode a “closed chapter” while the BCCI also made it clear that it would not pursue the case any further.