Former Sri Lanka player Lokuettige hit with match fixing charges

Sri Lanka cricket in new corruption scandal as Dilhara Lokuettige is hit with match fixing charges… their third former player to be charged this year

  • Former Sri Lanka international Dilhara Lokuhettige charged with match fixing
  • The 38 year old faces three charges, including attempting to fix a game
  • The charges relate to the new T10 tournament that took place in the UAE in 2017
  • He is the third former Sri Lankan player to face corruption charges this year 

Sri Lankan cricket has been plunged into yet more turmoil with the news that Dilhara Lokuhettige, a former one-day international all-rounder, is facing corruption charges relating to the new T10 tournament that took place last year in the UAE.

The 38-year-old Lokuhettige, who last played for his country in July 2013, has been hit with three charges by the ICC’s anti-corruption unit: attempting to fix a match, attempting to corrupt another player, and failing to report an illegal approach. He has 14 days to respond.

Though relatively unknown, Lokuhettige becomes the latest Sri Lankan player to be caught up in cricket’s fight against corruption.

Former Sri Lanka international Dilhara Lokuhettige has been hit with match fixing charges

Former Sri Lanka international Dilhara Lokuhettige has been hit with match fixing charges

Last month, former batting legend and chairman of selectors Sanath Jayasuriya was charged with failing to cooperate with a wide-ranging ICC investigation into wrongdoing in Sri Lankan cricket, while bowling coach Nuwan Zoysa was recently charged with match-fixing.

Lokuhettige’s charges come a week after Sri Lanka’s own head of anti-corruption, Ayesh Weerakoddy, was sacked by the ICC. 

To add to the sense of chaos, team manager Charith Senanayake quit two days ago for personal reasons, though his departure is not linked to corrupt activities.

The three charges relate to the new T10 tournament that took place in the UAE last year
He is the third former Sri Lankan player to be charged this year

The three charges relate to the new T10 tournament that took place in the UAE last year

Back in May, Lokuhettige appeared in the first of Al Jazeera’s two investigations into corruption in cricket, when he was recorded in a room talking to alleged fixers.

Two other men who also appeared in the broadcast – Jeevantha Kulatunga and Tharindu Mendis – were coaches in Sri Lankan domestic cricket, and were subsequently suspended by the Sri Lankan board. 

But Lokuhettige escaped censure because he lives in Australia, and held no position with Sri Lanka Cricket.

He is the 10th player – and the third Sri Lankan – to face ICC corruption charges this year, a list that also includes three players from Hong Kong, two Zimbabweans, and one cricketer each from India and the UAE.

 

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