Indian Premier League 2011 April 16, 2011

Murali criticises SLC decision to recall players

ESPNcricinfo staff

IPL Chairman Chirayu Amin has said that the controversy surrounding Sri Lanka Cricket's (SLC) decision to recall the Sri Lankan players participating in the IPL by May 5 to prepare for the tour of England will be resolved shortly.

"The BCCI top brass is in touch with SLC and they will resolve the issue," Amin told the Times of India. "It is an issue between SLC and its players who are playing in IPL four. We are expecting that the issue will get solved by next week."

Sri Lanka's cricketers are due to depart for England on May 10 where they will play three Tests, five ODIs and one Twenty20. Duleep Mendis, chairman of selectors, had said that it was important for the players "to report for training and to concentrate on getting used to the change of playing white balls to red."

Meanwhile, former Sri Lankan offspinner Muttiah Muralitharan, who is playing for Kochi Tuskers Kerala in the IPL, has slammed the board's decision.

"I think the board [SLC] has given them permission till May 20," Murali told a TV channel. "I don't know what happened suddenly. The players were told to come on May 5. It is the fault of SLC because they signed the NOC [No Objection certificate] till May 20 so if they change it to May 5 it is wrong.

"Players will get demoralised, because if they go back on May 5, they play half of the IPL and they are going to miss a lot [of it]. SLC should have informed the players earlier, then the IPL franchises would understand and everyone would understand," he said. There are currently 11 Sri Lankan cricketers, including Murali, involved in the IPL.

Murali said that incident could spark some "friction" between the boards of the two countries. "We have 25 million dollars of debt after the World Cup. You don't have to antagonise India because only when India comes [to Sri Lanka] we make money and survive, so I don't know what's going to happen."

Former Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara who is captaining Deccan Chargers in the IPL, said the players would follow the board's directive. "It is up to the BCCI and the SLC to negotiate on this. What we as players can do is to abide by the decision of our board."