The Attorney General today informed Court of Appeal that the National Sports Council had conducted discussions with Sports Minister to bring necessary amendments to the sport regulations and Sports Act No.25 1973.

Additional Solicitor General Sumathi Dharmawardena PC appearing for the Sports Minister made these remarks when the writ petition filed by a group of prominent individuals including former professional cricketer Muttiah Muralitharan taken up for consideration.

However, Mr. Dharmawardena told court that the Attorney General is yet to receive instructions from Minister Namal Rajapaksha regarding the relief prayed by petitioners through this writ petition.

Court of Appeal two-judge-bench comprising Justice (President) Arjuna Obeysekera and Mayadunna Corea directed the respondents to file their objections against the petition on or before June 8. The petition was fixed for June 8 accordingly.

The petitioners are; Muttiah Muralitharan, Kushil Gunasekera, Sidath Wettimuny, Michael Tissera, Justice (Retd) Saleem Marsoof PC, Dinal Phillips PC, Rienzie Wijetilleke, Thilan Wijesinghe, Vijaya Malalasekera, Ana Punchihewa, Somasundaram Skandakumar and Dr. Palitha Kohona.

The petitioners stated that ad-hoc reforms short of a new Constitution for SLC would be a cosmetic exercise, during these dire times for Cricket in Sri Lanka.

The petitioners stated that generic solutions as amending the Sports Act of Sri Lanka cannot improve the Governance standards of SLC. Cricket in Sri Lanka is a million dollar business unmatched by any other sport in the country. Cricket is the most popular sport in the country that has won two World Cups.

The petitioners said they are expecting to form an independent committee of governance experts to draft a brand new Constitution for SLC with input from the International Cricket Council (ICC). We also wish to have this new Constitution passed as an Act of Parliament to avoid any dilution or compromises at the hands of vested interests, the petitioners said.

The petitioners further stated that from 1st January 2016 to 31st January 2021, Sri Lanka has lost 118 out of all 194 international matches played, for a dismal winning percentage of 30.92%.

The petitioner said the current constitution of SLC has given birth to a system of politically motivated “Honorary office bearers” who come through a divisive election process.

They further said for a population of 22 million, Sri Lanka has a monumental 24 first class clubs. Comparatively, for a population of 25 million, Australia has just 6 first class

clubs and England with a population of 56 million has just 18 first class clubs.


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