Lasith Malinga handed suspended 12-month ban and fine

By Associated Press | June 27, 2017

The fast bowler was subjected to a disciplinary inquiry for an interview in which he criticised the island's sports minister. © AFP

Lasith Malinga received a suspended one-year cricket ban after the fast bowler pleaded guilty to a charge of speaking to the media without permission, Sri Lanka's cricket board said Tuesday.

The sanction is suspended for six months and Malinga will also be fined 50 percent of the match fee from his next one-day international, Sri Lanka Cricket said.

The charge against Malinga came from his response to criticism by Sri Lanka's sports minister over the team's fitness levels.

Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara castigated players for allegedly being overweight soon after Sri Lanka failed to reach the semifinals at the Champions Trophy earlier in June, with the team dropping several catches against Pakistan.

Malinga said players knew best about the game and likened the minister — who had suggested military training for the team — to a monkey occupying a parrot's nest.

Sri Lanka Cricket appointed a three-member disciplinary committee, with Malinga pleading guilty Tuesday to breaching his contract with the board by speaking to the media without permission.

A special executive committee meeting later Tuesday considered the finding of the inquiry and announced the sentence. It means the bowler will be free to play in the home series against Zimbabwe starting Friday.

Team officials earlier made a presentation to Jayasekara over the players' fitness program, Sri Lanka cricket manager Asanka Gurusinha said.

Also Tuesday, Sumathipala announced that fielding coach Nic Pothas will be interim head coach after the resignation of Graham Ford midway through his contract. Pothas will continue until the end of a home series against India starting next month.

Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe play five one-day internationals and a test match.

© Associated Press


Anonymous1's picture

I think Malinga made more than enough money from interviews to compensate the fine. So, Malinga is the winner from this fiasco. But, the issue between him and the minister has taken the focus away from cricket.

The suspension is just a show. What Malinga has to do now is to take few wickets in Zimbabwe matches and everything will be fine and dandy.
And Malinga will have another "Verbal Diarrhea" very soon and the Show will go on.

Stormy's picture
Member since:
15 January 2011
Last activity:
17 min 50 sec

So the honorable man can get up on stage and say anything he wishes including degrading the team (that he chose) that just lost. But the players must stand around and listen to this clown do the circus act? What a joke! This is the guy who is ultimately responsible.

Anonymous1's picture

Stormy, I understand what you say. But, in my comment I never said that the Minister is right.

Minster is a Sri Lankan politician. Not a Professional cricketer. We know that most of our politicians insult, fight each other on stage, TV programs and in the parliament. They even use vulgarity . unfortunately, they stoop to those very low levels.

Malinga, being a professional, should have contacted the minister and requested to have a discussion with him accompanied by Mathews or Malinga's Manager. Then they should have issued a joint communique about the discussion. He would have told the media that he is awaiting a response from the minister for a discussion.

Instead, he went down to the minister's level.

I think that Malinga missed a great opportunity to show how a conflict should be resolved professionally.

That was what I meant.

I feel that our players are not given any training in conflict resolution. I remember Mahela complaining in public about the management after returning from a championship win while the whole country was enjoying.

I am happy that Mahela, being matured now, has realized the close-door discussions are better in many occasions.

Stormy, thank you very much for responding. I kindly request you to say what you think now.

I wish you well.

Anonymous's picture

The present officials are quite unaware of the importance of holding competitive Cricket tournaments throughout the Y, as it had been happening here 20 Ys ago 1996 [ which made us very competitive and kept players in good rhythm & form ] & has been conntinously happening in our neighbor countries. The main reason of limiting of major t’ments to 1 -2 is,that they want to keep these unutilized funds [that should be paid as incentives to promising youngsters] for their own good use in the future. Interstingly there wasn’t single t’ment held this year apart from the continuation of last Y’s Premier Div & some practice matches [ as a District tournament though in reality those teams were represented by different Premier Div club teams ] just before the CT just to fool the Country’s Rulers & fans. Unfortunately they have no concern for up lift the Cricket standards, however there’re busy in building big stadiums & signing huge contracts with world famous foreign players. Some politicians too seems to have no respect for our National Cricketers who have contributed heavily for the Country’s reputation & Goodwill that attracts foreign investers. In order to keep players fully fit SLC has to keep them engaged in organizing Competitive Tournament covering the entire year.

Anonymous's picture

So this means Minister can say anything to players but players cannot reply.

Minister please be quite just only talk when needed,also now focus on trying to find a good coach.

Honestly Malinga had to talk because of Thisara but now he doesn't talk anything, at least to defend Malinga. We can understand the situation of team work on the field.

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