Recently elected Sri Lanka Cricket Board President Thilanga Sumathipala is determined to wipe out the Ranatunga’s support base from Sri Lanka Cricket administration, sources within the cricket board told Colombo Telegraph today.
Taking the first casualty, with barely three days to depart for the Under 19 Cricket World Cup scheduled to take place in Bangladesh, Shane Fernando the appointed Manager of the team had been removed from his duties yesterday and replaced by cricket selector Ranjith Madurusinghe.
Fernando who had been appointed to the post since January 01, 2015 up until the scheduled Under 19 World Cup which takes place on the January 22, 2016 in Bangladesh, had been working with the squad from day one.
He has been relieved of all of his Managerial duties and responsibilities and they have been handed over to the Under 19 selector Madurusinghe instead.
Fernando will nevertheless still make the tour to handle all other logistical duties.
Colombo Telegraph contacted SLC CEO Ashley De Silva to seek clarification regarding this matter. CEO De Silva refused to speak to the media stating that all media related questions should be posed to SLC secretary Mohan De Silva instead.
When Colombo Telegraph asked the SLC CEO De Silva if the Secretary was more powerful than himself being the CEO, De Silva said ” I have no comment. Please speak to the Secretary I dont speak to the media regarding these issues”.
However it is reliably learnt that it was the CEO De Silva himself who broke the news to Fernando when he summoned him to his Head Quartered office yesterday to inform him of this change.
Subsequently when Colombo Telegraph contacted Sri Lanka Cricket’s Secretary Mohan De Silva he confirmed the news to be true.
” The Executive Committee of SLC felt that it was necessary to have the travelling selector Madurusinghe manage the team on this all important tour being a former national cricketer himself. We still wish to utilize Shane Fernando’s experience too and he will also be going on the tour” said De Silva the newly elected Secretary of SLC.
It is widely believed that this decision taken by the current Executive Committee is because Shane Fernando despite being a paid employee of Sri Lanka Cricket, had indirectly supported the Ranatunga camp leading up to the recently concluded SLC Executive Committee elections.
Fernando’s affiliations and friendship to the Ranatunga camp dates back to the 80’s when he opened batting for Sinhalese Sports Club when Arjuna Ranatunga was the captain.
However Fernando, the former Outstation School Boy Cricketer of the Year in 1986 and also a former UAE national cricketer is still to be served an official letter in this regard.
” This is the SLC President Thilanga Sumathipala’s first step at removing all Ranatunga residue left behind. There will certainly be more mop up operations taking place as the days unfold” said a SLC source on the condition of anonymity. (Filed by Marlon Dale Ferreira © CT )