The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2013 governing council has decided not to let Sri Lankan cricketers play in the upcoming IPL matches in Chennai citing security reasons.
"The Governing Council decided that Sri Lankan players will not participate in the Pepsi IPL 2013 League matches in Chennai and will advise the nine franchises accordingly," said IPL Chairman Rajeev Shukla in a statement.
The move came after Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalitha informed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh about the state government not allowing IPL matches involving Sri Lankans to be played. The CM said that their participation could hurt the sentiments of Tamilians.
"In view of the popular antipathy and anger in Tamil Nadu against the actions of the government of Sri Lanka, the state government is of the view that IPL matches involving Sri Lankan players, umpires and other officials should not be played in Tamil Nadu," Jayalalitha said in a letter addressed to the PM.
A total of 10 matches are scheduled to be played in the sixth edition of the Indian Premier League which is starting on 3 April in Chennai. The first match is on 6 April between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians.
Eight of the nine IPL teams have Sri Lankan players. Among them are Akila Dananjaya and Nuwan Kulasekara in Chennai Super Kings, Lasith Malinga in Mumbai Indians, Jeevan Mendis and Mahela Jayawardene in Delhi Daredevils, Kusal Janith Perera in Rajasthan Royals, Sachithra Senanayake in Kolkata Knight Riders, Ajantha Mendis and Angelo Mathews in Pune Warriors, Muttiah Muralitharan and Tillakaratne Dilshan in Royal Challengers, and Kumar Sangakkara and Thisara Perera in Sunrisers Hyderabad.
With 13 Sri Lankan cricketers playing in various IPL teams, their absence will be felt in the upcoming matches. Delhi Daredevils, which is led by Jayawardene, and Sunrisers Hyderabad, which is captained by Sangakkara, will have to play without their regular captains in all the matches played in Chennai.
Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalitha had written a letter to the PM, informing him that Sri Lankan cricketers wouldn't be allowed to play in the state.
The move to restrict Sri Lankan cricketers from playing in the IPL series came after the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) withdrew support to Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) coalition government over the Sri Lankan Tamils issue. The party said that the centre failed to amend the UN resolution against Sri Lanka for alleged war crimes committed against the Tamils in the island country.