SL T20 league to go ahead despite match-fixing allegation

Friday, May 24, 2024

COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s T20 Premier League (LPL) vowed Thursday to press ahead in July despite the arrest of a team’s British owner over alleged involvement in match-fixing.

The five-team cricket tournament was thrown into doubt after the arrest of Tamim Rahman, owner of the Dambulla Thunders, on Wednesday.Rahman was stopped at the airport in Colombo before he was able to board a flight to Dubai and remanded in custody by a court in the Sri Lankan capital until May 31.

It came a day after the team paid $450,000 to sign 24 players at auction. Dambulla will be taken over by new owners, LPL rights holder IPG Group said in a statement.Rahman, who has extensive business ties to Bangladesh, was under investigation for alleged offences related to match-fixing and organised betting, police told the court.

“The Dambulla franchise, despite the recent changes, will participate under new ownership,” IPG Group said in a statement.“We are in the final stages of confirming the new ownership, ensuring a seamless transition and uninterrupted participation of the team in the tournament.”

A special police unit dealing with corruption in sports carried out the arrest, the first involving an official of the LPL since it began four years ago.Those convicted under the sports act face fines of up to 100 million rupees ($333,300) and jail sentences of up to 10 years.