ICC CRICKET WORLD CUP, 2019
Sri Lanka have complained to the ICC about “unfair” green tracks for their games so far © AFP
Sri Lanka have filed an official complaint with the ICC about the “unfair” green tracks dished out to them for their World Cup matches, in addition to the training, residential and transport facilities provided to the team.
Sri Lanka heavily lost their first match to New Zealand on a bowling-friendly track in Cardiff and are now set to face Australia in their fifth game on Saturday at The Oval, on what’s looking like another green deck. Sri Lanka team manager Ashantha de Mel wrote to the ICC four days ago but confirmed that he hasn’t yet received a response yet from the governing board.
“What we have found out is that for the four matches we have played so far at Cardiff and Bristol the ICC has prepared a green pitch, and at the same venues where the other countries have played the pitches are brown and favourable for high scoring,” de Mel told the Daily News. “This is a World Cup where the top ten countries are taking part and I feel that all the participants should be treated equally.
“The pitch being prepared for our match against Australia on Saturday here at The Oval is green. It is not sour grapes that we are complaining but it is very unfair on the part of the ICC that they prepare one type of wicket for certain teams and another type for others.”
De Mel also wrote about being provided with insufficient number of practice nets as well as other facilities that were provided to other teams.
“Even the practice facilities provided at Cardiff were unsatisfactory,” de Mel said. “Instead of three nets they gave us only two and the hotel we were put up at Bristol did not have a swimming pool, which is very essential for every team for the fast bowlers especially to relax their muscles after practice. The hotels that Pakistan and Bangladesh were put up at Bristol had swimming pools.
“We wrote to the ICC listing all these shortcomings four days ago but so far we have not had any response from them. We will continue to write to them until we get a reply.”
Asked about the matter in the pre-match press conference, Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne didn’t confirm whether Sri Lanka had filed a complaint or not, but said that all they expect are fair wickets. “We are not expecting every wicket should be white-top. We are asking for a fair wicket. You know, you have 50-50 wickets, that’s what we all want and what all the spectators want,” he said.