A couple of weeks after former Sri Lanka sports minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage claimed that Sri Lanka 'sold' the World Cup 2011 final to ensure victory for India, Sri Lanka government has reportedly ordered a criminal probe into the allegations. "A criminal investigation has begun," KDS Ruwanchandra, the secretary to the sports ministry, was quoted as saying by news agency AFP.
The issue was sprung up earlier this month when in an interview with local TV channel 'Sirasa', Aluthgamage, who was Sri Lanka sports minister at the time, said that the 2011 World Cup final between India and Sri Lanka was fixed. "Today I am telling you that we sold the 2011 world cup, I said this when I was the sports minister," Aluthgamage had said.
The news agency AFP also had cited local reports from Sri Lanka claiming that former Sri Lanka captain Aravinda de Silva, who was the chief selector of the team for the 2011 finals, was summoned for an interview with the investigators on Tuesday.
De Silva, in a column on The Sunday Times earlier this month had refuted the allegations, and urged SLC, BCCI and the ICC to investigate the matter to clear out any doubts on the subject. "We cannot let people get away all the time with lies. I request everyone, ICC, BCCI, and SLC to investigate this immediately.
"Just like we cherished our World Cup victory, players like Sachin (Tendulkar) cherish these moments for the rest of their lives. I think in the interest of Sachin and the millions of cricket fans across India, it's the duty of the Indian government and their cricket board to initiate an impartial inquiry to see whether they have won a fixed World Cup," he had written in his column.
The 2011 World Cup final saw Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara electing to bat after winning the toss. Mahela Jayawardena scored a brilliant century and India were asked to chase down a target of 275. With the brilliance of Gautam Gambhir (97) and then skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (91), India achieved the target with six wickets in hand to win the trophy for the second time after 1983.