Sri Lanka Cricket Suspends Domestic Tournaments Amidst Restructuring Dispute

Sri Lanka Cricket has taken a decisive step by suspending all of its board-run domestic tournaments, effective immediately. This announcement was made on Friday, September 1, following a heated dispute surrounding the restructuring of these tournaments. The conflict arose after Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) introduced significant changes to its domestic tournaments, changes that require the approval of Sports Minister Roshan Ranasinghe, an approval that has not yet been granted.

In an official statement released by SLC, it was stated, “Sri Lanka Cricket has decided to immediately halt all board-conducted domestic tournaments, including the ongoing Major Club 3-Day Tournament and the Invitational Club Tier ‘B’ 3-Day Tournament.

Notably, SLC had overhauled its domestic tournament structure in 2022 based on recommendations from the now-defunct Technical Advisory Committee, which was spearheaded by former captain Arvinda de Silva. The committee’s proposal involved eliminating the two-tier structure and establishing two groups, each consisting of 13 teams. These teams would engage in three-day matches throughout the season.

Under this revamped system, the bottom two teams from each group would face relegation after the first two seasons, followed by an additional three teams in the third year. This would result in a top-tier domestic tournament featuring 15 teams, while the relegated teams would participate in a limited-overs competition known as the Governor’s Cup.

However, SLC reverted to the previous format after the 2022 season due to several relegated teams voicing concerns about the quality of cricket. This decision to return to the older system faced opposition. Any alteration to the SLC domestic tournament structure necessitates approval from the sports minister, requiring changes to the SLC constitution. Gesto Sports Club, in particular, raised objections to SLC’s decision to revert to the previous format for domestic tournaments.

Consequently, the media release from Sri Lanka Cricket noted, “Accordingly, Sri Lanka Cricket is compelled to suspend all SLC-organized domestic cricket tournaments until clarification is obtained on the same.” Presently, it remains uncertain when or if the domestic tournaments will resume.


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