“Asantha De Mel was told to step down as Sri Lanka Team Manager’

Written by Sumit Seth

The embarrassing defeat against touring England in the first Galle test has opened a can of worms in Sri Lanka cricket. While there is a ‘sex scandal’ story making headlines, the sudden decision by chairman of selectors Asantha De Mel to step down from his manager post has also surprised many! While, Asantha is trying to save his face by claiming that it’s his decision to vacant the manager post, Cricket Age reliably learns that a higher authority instructed the former fast bowler to gracefully step down from the post for the betterment of the Sri Lanka cricket!

“The highest authority realized that Asantha De Mel doesn’t carry enough capacity to handle both the responsibilities. It was visible that he was not giving his 100% as team manager. That’s why, he was clearly instructed to gracefully move out” an insider in the team management told Cricket Age.

It has further learnt that even the team management and some senior players were also not happy with Asantha’s role as team manager, while Head Coach Micky Arthur was also having reservations over his over-dominating  presence in the dressing room. On December 17, on the eve of Sri Lanka’s departure for South Africa, Cricket Age had exposed that Asantha had wanted players and team management staff to come at Maitland Place and collect allowance individually. He collected only his own allowance and disappeared. Asantha De Mel’s that unprofessional act in collecting allowances and distributing had angered Players big time.

In the greed of overseeing both the responsibilities, Asantha failed miserably in each assignment. Now, as fellow selectors Pramodaya Wickramasinghe has been told by the SLC to look after players fitness ahead of the West Indies tour, Asantha has become less-important as a Chief selector also.

“Actually, he should have resigned from Chairman of selectors post first. This is an exiting time for Sri Lanka cricket, when young talents like Pathum Nissanka, Ashen Bandara, Dhananjaya Lakshan are ready to be groomed for the national side. These young players need an visionary chairman of selectors, not an outdated person like Asantha” the insider added.

In addition, Cricket Age understands that the said ‘sex scandal’ story is also linked with Asantha’s incompetence as team manager.

“The lady team doctor actually started to take the upper hand, due to Ashantha’s  ineffectiveness in the dressing room. Some didn’t like it” the insider added further.

On January 17, Cricket Age had published that angered by his continues illogical selections, thousands of Sri Lanka cricket fans have lent their support to an online petition on the social media for the removal of Ashantha De Mel as chief selector as well. So far, more than 12,000 cricket fans have signed the petition.




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Sumit Seth