Former Sri Lanka Test cricketer turned cricket official Jayananda Warnaweera failed to turn up yesterday for a match-fixing investigation conducted by International Cricket Council (ICC) Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ASCU) and has been suspended by SLC from all his official duties as the curator of Galle International cricket stadium, sources told “Daily Mirror”.
Two ASCU investigators had flown down to Colombo from ICC for the inquiry scheduled for last morning at Cinnamon Grand Hotel, but Warnaweera had not attended the hearing, forcing the ICC officials to go back empty-handed.
However ICC had alerted SLC earlier about the investigation and had reportedly instructed them to remove Warnaweera from all his official duties connected to cricket pending the outcome of the investigation.
Accordingly, SLC has suspended Warnaweera from his duties as the curator of the Galle International cricket stadium where he held the position for more than two decades after a lengthy first class career with Galle Cricket Club.
Sources said that ICC had also advised SLC to refrain from issuing accreditation to Warnaweera for the current international series against West Indies and for any other series till the outcome of the investigation.
Thus, SLC has debarred Warnaweera from entering Galle stadium, they added.
SLC has dispatched Sri Lanka’s national curator B.A. Janaka Sampath urgently to be in charge of the Galle stadium which will host Sri Lanka’s first Test against West Indies starting next Wednesday.
Earlier, on Thursday last week, Warnaweera had suddenly and mysteriously handed over his resignation as a member of the interim committee running SLC citing personal reasons.
However, speculation was rife that SLC interim committee chairman Sidath Wettimuny had asked Warnaweera to step down after being informed by ICC of the pending match-fixing investigation.
Warnaweera also failed to co-operate with an ICC match-fixing investigation back in 2006, that resulted in ICC rejecting his name from a list of Sri Lankans to be honoured with a special recognition medal for the ICC centenary in 2009.
On May 8 this year, Daily Mirror in an article titled“SLC integrity at stake” exclusively reported this and revealed that his appointment to the interim committee by the then Sports Minister Navin Dissanayake had left ICC furious.
‘Daily Mirror’ has seen an official communication sent by the ICC to SLC in 2009, that calls into question the integrity of Warnaweera, who had been nominated by SLC for an ICC Centenary Medal – a medal ICC awarded to volunteers who ensured cricket is a great sport with a great spirit, in line with its centenary year celebration.
Warnaweera’s nomination was rejected by the ICC, who said he had not cooperated with the ICC Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU) when it attempted to interview him ‘on an anti-corruption matter.’
The ICC communication also shows that they had asked SLC in 2006 to convene a Committee of Inquiry into this issue, which the Daily Mirror learns has not been done upto this point.
Warnaweera, also said that he was unaware of the allegations against him, and the ICC’s rejection of his Centenary Medal nomination, when he was asked for a comment.
Interestingly, Minister Dissanayake appointed Warnaweera and the rest of the present interim committee in April this year alleging the former officials who had been democratically elected as corrupt.
The appointment of the Interim Committee has since come under scrutiny by the ICC who has threatened to sanction Sri Lanka Cricket, if it were not run by a democratically elected body.
Our efforts to contact SLC’s Anti-Corruption officer SSP Lakshman de Silva proved futile yesterday.
Warnaweera played ten Tests and six One Day Internationals for Sri Lanka between 1986 and 1994. (Channaka de Silva)
Comments - 9
dcol Thursday, 08 October 2015 02:40 PM
Biggest question is : "was match fixing the only crime/wrongdoing he had committed?".. I think ICC and National Child Protection Authority must work together to protect Young Children from this level of bad examples and other things...
Ananda Thursday, 08 October 2015 03:11 PM
Taking revenge is become so common now in Sri Lanka attaching something plausible enough. Call him from FCID too.
What a pity this gentleman did so much for the cricket in Sri Lanka especially for renovations of galle stadium after the tsunami.
lkboy Thursday, 08 October 2015 12:58 PM
So finally the cat is out!
Aquarius Thursday, 08 October 2015 01:17 PM
If allegations are baseless, Warnaweera should have faced any investigation without fear. Avoiding questions for the second time makes us all think the obvious. SLC should be brave to tackle these issues without any bias or favour. We have a culture of protecting the guilty and turning a blind eye to accountability and transparency. Good move to suspend until final outcome.
Joseph von Bergheim Friday, 09 October 2015 07:50 PM
Match fixing allegations, change of Sports Minister, no coach, interim committee etc. What is happening to Sri Lankan cricket?
Comments will be edited (grammar, spelling and slang) and authorized at the discretion of Daily Mirror online. The website also has the right not to publish selected comments.