In a shocking turn of events, three Sri Lanka U19 players were found drunk in their rooms after team’s semi final match against India in the recently concluded Asia Cup, Cricket Age reliably learns. The Sri Lanka Cricket Board (SLC) has taken the matter seriously and all three players are likely to be suspended for one year.
The incident happened after the match was washed out at P. Sara Ovel on September 12. According to sources, after match washed out around 2.45 PM due to persistent rain, the players returned to hotel. However, the said three players started drinking around 5 PM itself in a room.
After Security guard heard the noise of singing and shouting from the room, he informed team manager Farveez Maharoof, former Sri Lanka allrounder, and two other officials – a school representative Viraj and a SLC representative. Maharoof immediately took the players to doctor, who confirmed that players were heavily dunked.
The SLC has already withdrawn the players from the squad for the Bangladesh tour and a further punishment of one year suspension is likely to announced after board’s Executive Committee (ExCo) meeting on Monday.
“This is disgusting and painful, as these players are future prospects. However, they they needs to be taught a hard lesson for their mistake at such young age. That’s why, the ExCo is likely to slap at least one year suspension” a senior SLC administrator told Cricket Age.
Apart from the players, however, team manager Maharoof also needs to be blamed for this shocking incident. In last few months, he has become one of the most high profile and influential former player in Sri Lanka, largely due to his high level connections at SLC. Maharoof is already drawing two salaries from SLC, as he is also in the U19 selection committee. Apart from this, he also does commentary without any hurdle with the blessings of his guardians.
During the Asia Cup as well, Maharoof conduct as Team manager was questionable! Midway through the tournament, for an entire day, he left the team for the inauguration of his children’s play school in Colombo.
That allowed players to get involved in other activities than the cricket. According to sources, until few months back, Sri Lanka U19 tram had a retired army officer as team manager. During his tenure, the team never faced this sort of embarrassment. However, as Maharoof was busy, as usually, in his other commitments, now even Sri Lanka cricket’s next generation is losing its focus. According to sources, few other players were also drinking, however, only these three were caught red handed. One players involvement in this incident is particularly painful, as he has been a revolution in junior cricket in last few seasons.