Cricket’s new breed of maverick has a walk in the park | Sunday Observer

Cricket’s new breed of maverick has a walk in the park

Shammi Silva
Shammi Silva

Arjuna Ranatunga lost contesting the vice president’s post and may now have to realise that a World Cup he won almost 25 years ago and personalities no longer count in a trendy set-up:

Jayantha Dharmadasa suffered a humiliating defeat in his quest to become the head of the country’s immortalised and multi-million dollar sporting institution when he was routed by a low ranked rival Shammi Silva who won the contest for Sri Lanka Cricket’s presidency by 82 votes to 56.

Dharmadasa hoped for a cake-walk with his main rivals Thilanga Sumathipala and Mohan de Silva out of the way, but instead he encountered the biggest shock by falling to Silva whom he has now turned into an overnight hero or Sri Lanka Cricket’s new breed of maverick. Analysts now contend it is the end of the road for Dharmadasa as far as the electoral process is concerned in the cricket set-up after his brother Upali quit the scene sometime ago.

Sumathipala did not contest the election and was replaced by Mohan de Silva as candidate for the president’s post.

Believing him to be the only remaining threat, Dharmadasa made every complaint against Mohan de Silva who successfully sought a court ruling in his favour and was allowed to contest the secretary’s post for which he also sent in his nomination.

Dharmadasa was also thought to have had the tacit support of the government with Sumathipala being an Opposition Member of Parliament

Mohan de Silva eventually won the secretary’s post by brushing aside Nishantha Ranatunga who perhaps had no other choice but to pad-up for the wrong team only to end up on the losing side. But being a proven and capable administrator Nishantha Rantunga accepted defeat with a sense of dignity bowing down to the verdict of the clubs, a stark contrast from many of the losers and their supporters. His elder brother Arjuna Ranatunga lost contesting the vice president’s post and may now have to realise that a World Cup he won almost 25 years ago and personalities no longer count in a trendy set-up.

The run-up to the election of office-bearers was also laced with allegations and counter allegations of corruption which drew the attention of the International Cricket Council.

Eventually the will of the majority of the clubs and associations with voting rights prevailed passing their own judgment on corruption or where it is most prevalent in Sri Lankan society.

Kangadaran Mathivanam who is viewed as cricket’s most clean-imaged administrator was the only one elected from the Opposition camp as vice president projecting a kind of difference between him and the rest of the losers in the Dharmadasa camp.

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