Sri Lanka Cricket responds to Arjuna Ranatunga’s ‘insult to our cricket’ comment before India series

Sri Lanka Cricket responds to Arjuna Ranatunga’s ‘insult to our cricket’ comment before India series

Ranatunga had said that Sri Lanka shouldn't have agreed to take part in the series.

Arjuna Ranatunga
Arjuna Ranatunga. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Starting July 13, Sri Lanka and India are set to take part in three T20Is and as many ODIs. For the tour, the Men in Blue decided to give their fringe players a chance to show their mettle at the highest level. The visitors have named six uncapped players in their 20-man squad, captained by Shikhar Dhawan, while another team is gearing up for the five-match Test series against England.

However, India leaving out quite a few of their key players for the Lanka tour irked Arjuna Ranatunga. The 1996 World Cup-winning captain termed India a “second string” team and reckoned that playing against them is an “insult” to Sri Lankan cricket.

“This is a second-string Indian team and their coming here is an insult on our cricket. I blame the current administration for agreeing to play with them due to television marketing needs,” Ranatunga had said.

Sri Lanka wary of Team India’s strength

In the meantime, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has responded to Ranatunga’s comments, stating that India have a strong squad at their disposal and can’t be called a second-string team.

“Sri Lanka Cricket wishes to announce that despite claims by various parties as reported in the Media, the National White-Ball team of India currently touring Sri Lanka is a strong squad,” SLC was quoted as saying in a statement, India Today reported.

“Out of the 20-member India squad, 14 players have represented India across all formats or in some form. (Test, ODI, or T20i), and not a ‘second-string team,’ as claimed,” the report added.

Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Nitish Rana, Krishnappa Gowtham, Varun Chakravarthy, and Chetan Sakariya are the six uncapped players in the Indian squad.

Chakravarthy has been a part of a couple of national squads but missed out due to fitness concerns. He earned the call-ups after performing well for the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

All the matches on the Sri Lanka tour will be played at the iconic R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. The Lankans are currently in England where they are taking part in a bilateral ODI and T20I series against the hosts. After losing the T20Is 0-3, they are trailing the ODI series 0-2.