The coming few weeks could see an amazing turn around in local cricket administration, after president Mahinda Rajapakse called for an investigation to find out why former Sri Lankan captain Sanath Jayasuriya was left out of the country`s Test tour to India. Cricket analysts were backing former fast bowler and ex-chief cricket selector Asanatha de Mel, who was unceremoniously dumped from the post soon after the interim committee headed by Jayantha Dharmadasa wrested control of cricket headquarters, in dramatic fashion using government force, to take over.
De Mel has been known as a fervent Rajapakse loyalist and his career as a cricket administrator has coincided with the political developments of the country.
Chairman of the Sports Council Saman Amarasinghe has been asked by the government to investigate why Jayasuriya has been left out of the Test squad and why, in the first place, he took part in the six one-day matches in India if he was not fit, `The Island` learns.
The national selection committee that hadn`t taken the trouble to explain matters to Jayasuriya as to why he had been kept out of the Test series, called for a meeting with the player on Thursday morning amidst recent developments to explain their stance and thinking. It`s reliably learnt that the selectors had indicated that they wanted the left-hand batsman to be around until the next World Cup.
The composition of the national selection committee, with a few questionable characters in the four-man panel has been a topic that has drawn the attention in recent times in the media circles. Dharmadasa, a respectable businessman, in his capacity as the cricket chief entered cricket administration vouching to root out corruption and malpractices, but sadly he too has promoted his backers without required credentials to crucial positions in cricket administration and as a result progress has only been at snail`s pace.
The cricket administration hit a new low in October, following the sudden death of secretary of the Interim Committee Tryphon Mirando who masterminded all crucial steps of the cricket administration and more importantly, had contacts with foreign cricket boards.
The decision to replace Mirando with K. Mathivanan, another capable and respectable administrator, however was seen as an excellent move.
Meanwhile, the selectors` decision to send CCC`s Jehan Mubarak as replacement for the injured Chamara Kapugedara for the Test series too has surprised cricket enthusiasts. In the first place, Mubarak hasn`t done anything sensational in recent `A` series matches or in the domestic competitions. On the other hand, left-hander Russel Arnold was one of the players who faired well in the ODIs in India and moreover he is one of standbys for the Tests.
Yesterday, the selectors were to meet the chairman of the Interim Committee, Jayantha Dharmadasa in a hastily arranged meeting that has been called by the cricket chief.