D-Day for domestic cricket as Galle CC confronts SLC on payments | Daily News

D-Day for domestic cricket as Galle CC confronts SLC on payments

The Galle Cricket Club forms part of the picturesque Galle International Cricket Stadium.
The Galle Cricket Club forms part of the picturesque Galle International Cricket Stadium.

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) could find their domestic cricket suspended if Galle Cricket Club goes ahead with an injunction against them for not paying the funds that is due to the club prior to the start of the season.

The main domestic season is scheduled to commence on Sunday (December 15) with the Premier limited-over tournament and Galle CC are one of the participants.

However because SLC has withheld the funds due to them Galle CC may have to either seek legal redress or pull out of the tournament.

A decision to this effect is to be taken today at a meeting of the Galle CC executive committee.

SLC grants about Rs. 11 million to each club for the entire season for their expenses.

“It is very difficult for us to take part in the tournament because we don’t have that kind of money,” said Galle CC president Kumar Samarasinghe.

“We will write to them and see whether SLC is paying or not. If not we have to take a decision whether to take them to courts and get an injunction on the tournament or to pull out. We have to discuss with my committee on Friday and taken a decision as the tournament is starting on Sunday,” he said.

Asked why SLC had reservations on paying the funds due to Galle CC, Samarasinghe said that it was “simply revenge” for not voting for the people in office at the last AGM.

“They come out with various allegations and those are all made up ones. When it came to the under 23 tournament they didn’t pay prior to the tournament saying that there was so many allegations of malpractices in the club and all that,” said Samarasinghe.

“We requested from the SLC secretary and CEO about three months ago that if they had any allegations against us to let us know that we’ll come and clear it. But without giving us an opportunity even after requesting they are trotting out various excuses to deprive us of our funds. We are trying to promote cricket and they are trying to curtail it.

“Actually what happened is that there was a court case and all those things with regard to the SLC election. Originally the presidency was to be contested between Mohan de Silva and Jayantha Dharmadasa,” explained Samarasinghe.

“Jayantha was the club president before me and the committee met and the majority decided to vote for Jayantha for the simple reason that he had done a lot for the club and there should be some courtesy for it. We took a mandate to vote for Jayantha. Shammi Silva came subsequently.

“Then a few people who were with us had a discussion; and with vested interest three committee members went against the entire committee and formed a separate committee and wanted to run the club by themselves which was totally against the constitution.

“We took a court order and after holding a proper inquiry took disciplinary action against them and expelled them for many other things like robbing club funds. We got a court order to hold our AGM and according to the rules and regulations we held it according to the law of the country. The guys who have made the complaint to the SLC are the ones whom we have expelled from the club,” he said.

In a shocking disclosure Samarasinghe, Marketing Director at Singer Sri Lanka PLC said that one of the conditions that have been put across to them by SLC is to take back the three members whom the Galle CC had suspended of trying to rob the club.

Explaining why Galle CC had to take such drastic steps to expel three of their members Samarasinghe said, “One of the vice presidents whom I expelled from the club had manipulated with the membership register. To get a life membership there is a procedure to follow. What he has done is taken money from various people and tippexed the members who have passed away and replaced their names into the register and altered it and given the old number. When we found out we had to take action, it’s not my money it’s the public funds that we are managing at the club. If SLC wants us to take back people who have done such a thing, I don’t know what to say it’s better to leave and go.”

“I live in Colombo and I am there for the cricket to support the club. I went there at their request not by election or anything. Galle CC invited me to help them. Of course I can’t keep my eyes closed from that kind of behaviour,” Samarasinghe said.


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