<
>

Windies manager unfairly targeted, says Condon

Lord Paul Condon, head of the International Cricket Council's Anti-Corruption Unit, believes that a number of misunderstandings contributed to the "bad and unfair experience" suffered by West Indies manager Ricky Skerritt during the recently held ICC Champions Trophy in Sri Lanka.

Lord Condon's comments came in a letter to Skerritt following a meeting with the West Indies manager and Rev. Wes Hall, president of the West Indies Cricket Board, in Colombo on Monday.

The meeting reviewed the events that led up to a Sri Lankan newspaper story which insinuated that police found "prostitutes" in the hotel-rooms of Skerritt and team analyst Garfield Smith.

"I have spoken to the Sri Lankan police and staff at your hotel, Rev. Wes Hall and my ACU colleagues, and there is no reason to doubt at all what you have said publicly and to me," Lord Condon wrote.

"Cultural and language differences clearly played their part. However the most important factor was that the Sri Lankan police exceeded the guidance my unit gave to the Sri Lankan cricket board.

"There is no reason to prevent visitors to your room whoever they are, unless there is a link to malpractice. You were understandably upset and the subsequent inaccurate press article seems to be sourced to the local police."

Skerritt had asserted in his letter of demand to the newspaper that the article had been deliberately planted to sully his good name and the West Indies team.

"The article contains absolute falsehoods and innuendoes made deliberately with the intention of causing damage and embarrassment to [me]," he said.

Lord Condon concluded his letter by informing the West Indies manager that a review of the incident had been put on record at the ICC's Executive Board meeting in Colombo on Monday and thanked Skerritt for all the co-operation the ACU received from the West Indies team.

Skerritt and the rest of the West Indies squad left Colombo on Tuesday for India where they will contest three Tests and seven limited-overs internationals.