Sri Lanka news August 31, 2013

SLC president reacts to Sangakkara's outburst

ESPNcricinfo staff

Sri Lanka Cricket president Jayantha Dharmadasa has said that the board had not questioned Kumar Sangakkara's loyalty to his country. In an email exchange with Sangakkara, published in the Daily Mirror, Dharmadasa said the board had not misrepresented any facts or misled the media.

Earlier this week, Sangakkara confirmed that he would represent Kandurata Maroons in the Champions League T20 tournament, instead of his IPL franchise, Sunrisers Hyderabad. He also criticized SLC, saying he was perturbed by the manner in which the board had publicly framed his situation.

"We totally deny that SLC has misrepresented facts to the media nor mislead the media in any manner whatsoever and we have not stated anything to question your loyalty to play for the local team nor have we tarnished your image for that matter," Dharmadasa wrote to Sangakkara. "In so far as SLC is concerned, we took a pragmatic view of the issues faced by us with regard to this matter and accordingly communicated to you our position."

In a reply to Dharmadasa's email, Sangakkara explained why he had communicated with the media: "The damage to my reputation had already been done in the days preceding my meeting with you and I was left with little choice but to address the media."

In his reply, Sangakkara also told Dharmadasa that an earlier email he had sent to SLC secretary, Nishantha Ranatunga, encompassed his experiences over the last year and a half. In the email to Ranatunga, Sangakkara had written: "You have made me seem disloyal to Sunrisers Hyderebad and also disloyal to my country. In the process, you have quite possibly jeopardised my future in the IPL. It ultimately leaves me to question whether your interest in this matter is more in line with a personal agenda against me rather than a national interest.

"I sincerely hope that your comments in the public are your own and are not in any way representative of the collective view of SLC and the current Ex Co. Since you have now set the precedent of demanding and insisting upon local players representing their home franchise over their IPL teams in the Champions League, I will be very interested to see if in the future when the same situation arises that you demand the same of other players."

Dharmadasa defended Ranatunga, stating the latter "commands the respect of the entire membership at Sri Lanka Cricket".

"It is indeed unfortunate and disappointing that you have singled out Nishantha and stated that his conduct in this matter has been reprehensible and not at all befitting the position he holds as secretary of SLC," Dharmadasa wrote. "As you are fully aware Nishantha was unanimously elected as the secretary of SLC at the last AGM held in March this year and commands the respect of the entire membership at Sri Lanka Cricket. You additionally state that 'it ultimately leaves me to question whether your interest in this matter is more in line with a personal agenda against me rather than a national interest', this is an allegation of a serious nature which is unacceptable to SLC.

"Nishantha as secretary communicates on behalf of the board in all administrative and cricketing matters which come within the purview of the executive committee. This is one such matter. As president, I need to inform you that all communications sent by Nishantha have been dispatched with the knowledge of the executive committee members who have been copied on such issues in order to resolve these matters in the best interest of SLC. He therefore communicates on behalf of SLC and not in an individual capacity. Your comment in relation to Nishantha is therefore regretted."