Sri Lanka’s former Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage on Thursday made a massive allegation that his country “sold” the 2011 World Cup final to India. The claim did not go down well with former skipprs Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene who demanded evidence from Aluthgamage.
In an interview with local TV channel ‘Sirasa’, Aluthgamage said the final was fixed. Set a target of 275, India claimed the trophy thanks to the brilliance of Gautam Gambhir (97) and then skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (91).
“Today I am telling you that we sold the 2011 world cup, I said this when I was the sports minister,” Aluthgamage, who was the sports minister at the time, said.
“As a country I do not want to announce this. I can’t exactly remember if it was 2011 or 2012. But we were to win that game,” added the politician, who was the state minister of power in the current caretaker government which is in charge until the election to be held on 5 August said.
I am telling you with responsibility I felt that the match was fixed. I can debate this, I know people were concerned about this.” he added.
Sangakkara, who was skipper of the national team in the aforementioned tournament, asked Aluthgamage to bring forward evidence for an anti-corruption probe.
“He needs to take his ‘evidence’ to the ICC and the Anti corruption and Security Unit so the claims can be investigated thoroughly,” an angry Sangakkara tweeted.
He needs to take his “evidence” to the ICC and the Anti corruption and Security Unit so the claims can be investigated throughly https://t.co/51w2J5Jtpc
— Kumar Sangakkara (@KumarSanga2) June 18, 2020
Jayawardene, also a former captain who scored a hundred in that game, slammed the allegation
“Is the elections around the corner…like the circus has started…names and evidence?” Jayawardene tweeted.
— Mahela Jayawardena (@MahelaJay) June 18, 2020
Aluthgamage said that in his opinion no players were involved in fixing the result, “but certain parties were.” He had also previously hinted that the game was fixed. Both Aluthgamage and the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa were among the invitees at the final played at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Former World Cup-winning captain Arjuna Ranatunga had also called for a probe on alleged match-fixing in the 2011 World Cup final.