In what comes as a shocking development, the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has asked the International Cricket Council (ICC) to probe “match-fixing allegations” with regard to the home Test series against Babar Azam-led Pakistan that was held in July. This has come forward only two weeks after the opposition member of the Sri Lankan parliament Nalin Bandara had made such an allegation for the home series that ended in a 1-1 stalemate. The match under the scanner is the series opener, where Pakistan rode on opener Abdullah Shafique’s 160 to chase down 342 with four wickets in hand.
A statement from SCL said, “The executive committee of SLC decided today to invite Mr Alex Marshall, the General Manager of the ICC anti corruption unit to Sri Lanka to investigate recent allegations of match fixing made by a parliamentarian regarding the recently concluded Pakistan tour.”
It further added, “Sri Lanka Cricket, as a full member of the ICC and mandated to uphold the integrity of the game at both the national and international level, believes that it is the correct course of action to take in light of the recent allegations made by the aforementioned parliamentarian, which have caused immense reputational damage to Sri Lanka Cricket and its stakeholders.”
The Pakistan-Sri Lanka series took place amid the economical crisis in the Island nation, which involved months of political unrest, power and fuel shortage across the nation. Babar & Co. had won the two-match Test series opener, in Galle, whereas Dimuth Karunaratne-led Lankan side levelled the series with a whopping 246-run win in the second and final Test, which was also shifted from Colombo to Galle.
As per a report in Cricbuzz, the ICC would not comment on the anti-corruption matters but it will send an Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) official to carry out the investigation.