People are yet to get over the ghosts of the ball-tampering saga that rocked Australia a few months ago, and the world cricket has been rocked by another episode of the ball tampering, putting Sri Lanka's skipper Dinesh Chandimal in the firing line this time.
On-field umpires Aleem Dar and Ian Gould and third umpire Richard Kettleborough charged Chandimal for altering the condition of the ball in the second Test against West Indies.
Here's how the event unfolded in St Lucia:
Sri Lanka's Suspicious bowling action:
The umpires got concerned over Sri Lanka's methods of maintaining the ball and approached the broadcasters for footage of the game to confirm their suspicion.
The footage showed Chandimal reaching into his pocket for retrieving sweets from it to put in his mouth. He then handed the ball to Lahiru Kumara after applying his saliva to the ball.
The bitter effect of ‘sweets in the pockets':
The umpires laid the charges of ball tampering on Dinesh Chandimal and added five penalty runs to Windies score.
“The ICC can confirm the match officials in the second test between West Indies and Sri Lanka changed the ball and awarded 5 penalty runs to West Indies,” the ICC said in a statement on their Twitter feed.
ICC also said, “Chandimal has been charged for breaching Level 2.2.9 of the ICC Code of Conduct.”
Chandimal has pleaded not guilty and a hearing will be held after the completion of the Test match.
Fuming Players refuse to take the field:
Angered by the decision Sri Lankan players refused to take the field as a mark of protest on the third day of the match, delaying the resumption of play for two hours.
Sri Lanka believed that the charges should have been laid by the end of day two rather than being enforced on the team just 10 minutes before the start of the play.
However, the situation came under control after match referee Javagal Srinath issued an ultimatum and asked Sri Lanka to take the field before 11:30 am or lose the game.
Chandimal's fate to be decided after the Test:
Sri Lanka team has denied any wrongdoing and has backed their team in the ball-tampering row vs West Indies.
It released a statement later on day three asserting, “SLC advised the team to continue with the game to ensure the continuity of the game and for upholding the spirit of the team.”
“SLC would take all the necessary steps for defending any player if any unwarranted allegation is brought against a member of the team.”
The next day ICC confirmed that Chandimal had pleaded not guilty and the hearing would be done at the end of the test.
If Chandimal is found guilty he may lose two suspension points and miss out the third Test.
More to Follow….