Sri Lanka Cricket says South Africa pull-out helped push it in to red

Feb 2, 2008 (AFP) – South Africa’s decision to quit a triangular one-day series in 2006 caused Sri Lanka’s hard-up cricketing body to lose 11 million dollars, a top official said here Saturday. Ranatunga said SLC was currently surviving on a six-million dollar bank overdraft, but India’s Test and one-day tour of Sri Lanka in July-August would boost his organisation’s finances. South Africa pulled out after a suspected Tamil Tiger rebel bomb attack hit the convoy of Pakistan’s top envoy to Sri Lanka, killing four of his bodyguards. The blast was near the South African team hotel.

“We lost 1.2 billion rupees (11 million US dollars) due to South Africa’s pulling out. That was the only revenue forthcoming in 2006,” Kangadaran Mathivanan, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) secretary, told AFP.

The triangular series was due to take place in August 2006 between the hosts, South Africa and India. India stayed to play Sri Lanka, however rain disrupted the matches.

Mathivanan’s remarks came after his new boss, Arjuna Ranatunga, who took over the reins of SLC last month, said that the governing body of the sport here had no money left and was banking on financial support from India to stay afloat.