Friday, September 19, 2008

Sri Lanka lifts domestic ban on ICL players

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has broken ranks with the official cricketing establishment by deciding to allow five cricketers and an umpire who last year signed up for the unauthorised ICL to play domestic cricket. The significant decision was taken by SLC's interim committee last week and has become public two days after the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) became the latest nationol body to ban its ICL cricketers from all forms of official cricket.

The five cricketers who are now eligible to play for their respective clubs are Marvan Atapattu, the former Sri Lanka captain, Russel Arnold, Upul Chandana, Avishka Gunawardene and Saman Jayantha; the umpire is Ranmore Martinesz. Atapattu, Arnold and Chandana retired from international cricket to play in the ICL, and will now be seen in Sri Lanka's Premier League and the limited-overs tournament, which are scheduled to start next month.

Players will be allowed to play for their respective clubs and share their expertise, but cannot represent the country.

The Sri Lankan move was not unexpected, though, after SLC invited Arnold and Chandana to attend post-match prize distribution ceremonies during the Indian series in August. That was in stark contrast to the approach adopted by the BCCI and other national boards, which have banned ICL cricketers from all official platforms - the trade laws in UK, however, ensure that these players can play county cricket.

The Indian board, meanwhile, has expressed disappointment at the Sri Lankan move and said it will take up the matter with the ICC.

- CricVille -
Sandesh Kumar
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