Sangakkara wants politics out of Sri Lankan cricket

LONDON, July 4, 2011 (AFP) – Sri Lanka star Kumar Sangakkara has welcomed the International Cricket Council (ICC) directive requiring all national boards to be elected without political interference. His call came just days after Sri Lanka’s sports minister said he had forced the national cricket board committee to step down following allegations of financial mismanagement.

Sri Lanka co-hosted the 2011 World Cup and were left with a $69 million bill, with media reports suggesting that mismanagement by Sri Lanka Cricket had been responsible for cost over-runs.

“We have to aspire to better administration,” said Sangakkara in the text of his MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture delivered at Lord’s on Monday.

“The administration needs to adopt the same values enshrined by the team over the years: integrity, transparency, commitment and discipline,” added Sangakkara, the first active cricketer to deliver the lecture, who on Sunday played at Lord’s in the Sri Lanka side that beat England by six wickets in the third one-day international.

“Unless the administration is capable of becoming more professional, forward-thinking and transparent then we risk alienating the common man,” said San