Sri Lanka great Sanath Jayasuriya has been charged with two breaches of the International Cricket Council’s anti-corruption code.
Jayasuriya was the player of the tournament when Sri Lanka won the 1996 World Cup, the highlight of a stellar playing career which took in 110 Tests, 445 one-day internationals and 31 Twenty20s.
The 49-year-old former Sri Lanka Cricket chair of selectors has two weeks to respond to the charges which relate to “failure or refusal” to co-operate with an investigation carried out by the anti-corruption unit.
He has also been charged with “obstructing or delaying any investigation that may be carried out by the ACU, including concealing, tampering with or destroying any documentation or other information that may be relevant to that investigation”.
The ICC said in a statement: “Sanath Jayasuriya, charged with two counts of breaching the ICC Anti-Corruption Code, has been given 14 days from 15 October 2018 to respond.”
Jayasuriya, who served as Sri Lanka captain from 1999 to 2003, amassed 6,973 runs at an average of just over 40 in Tests, placing him behind only Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene in his country’s all-time list.
A tally of 13,430 runs in ODIs is only bettered by India’s Sachin Tendulkar, Sangakkara and Australia’s Ricky Ponting, while a haul of 323 wickets ensured his place as one of the format’s finest all-rounders.
His international career spanned four decades – from 1989 to 2011 – and he will be remembered most fondly for his pinch-hitting role at the top of the order which helped Sri Lanka clinch their first global trophy 22 years ago.
As his playing career was winding down, he entered politics and served on the Sri Lankan parliament from 2010 to 2015, while he resigned as a member of the selection committee in August last year.
It is unknown which fixtures the charges relate to, or if anyone else is involved.
It was announced earlier this month that Alex Marshall, general manager of the anti-corruption unit, was overseeing a probe into potential corrupt practices over “serious allegations” in Sri Lanka.
The matters under investigation are historical in nature and do not pertain to England’s tour, but it was reported that both sides would be met by Marshall’s team prior to the ODI series, which started last week, to highlight the ongoing problems.
“We are currently in Sri Lanka as part of our ongoing investigations into serious allegations of corruption in cricket in the country,” Marshall said a couple of weeks ago.
“The enquiries are continuing so it would not be appropriate to comment further, but I can confirm that we have, at their request, provided a detailed briefing to the Sri Lankan President, Prime Minister and Sports Minister.
“We are receiving full support from the Competent Authority currently in place at Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) whilst elections for the SLC Board are pending.”