Indian cricket board to hold talks with Sri Lankan officials to settle IPL issue

Apr 14, Colombo: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is in talks with the Sri Lankan Cricket board to find a solution to the crisis created by ordering the Sri Lankan cricketers playing for Indian Premier League (IPL) to come back to prepare for the national team’s tour in England.

“We are in talks with the Lankan board and we hope to find a solution to this crisis soon,” a top BCCI official has told the Indian daily, Times of India on Wednesday.

Sri Lanka’s Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage has asked the Sri Lankan cricketers playing for the IPL to return to the country by May 5 to prepare for the tour to England which starts from May 14.

Aluthgamage has issued a stern warning to take disciplinary action against the Sri Lankan players if they do not return in time for practice to prepare for the tour.

Minister’s order has made the IPL team owners worried that if their top Lankan players miss the matched at the end of the season that would affect the balance of their sides.

If Sri Lanka’s top players are to leave by May 5 as the Minister ordered, the Deccan Chargers would be without captain Kumar Sangakkara and Kochi Tuskers would be without captain Mahela Jayawardena.

Lasith Malinga has been a key player for the Mumbai Indians in their two victories while Tillakaratne Dilshan is an explosive opener for Royal Challengers.

Angelo Mathews of Pune Warriors, Suraj Randiv, and Nuwan Kulasekara of Chennai Super Kings, Thisara Perera of Kochi Tuskers and Nuwan Pradeep of Royal Challengers are the other national team players in the IPL.

The TOI reports says when the auction for players took place in January this year, the teams were told that the Sri Lankans would be available till May 22 and team combinations were formed on that assurance.

“Now, if the Lankan sports minister doesn’t change its mind, the teams will have a lot to complain about, which could also lead to tension between the Indian and Lankan boards,” the TOI said.

BCCI officials are hoping that some of the top Sri Lankan players will be available to play for the IPL final on May 28. Sri Lanka’s first Test with England starts on May 26.

“We share a good rapport with the SLC. We will sort out this issue,” the BCCI official has said.

Indian media reported that a host of Australian players will, however, join their IPL teams this week after the ODI series against Bangladesh.

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