Angelo Mathews Danushka Gunathilaka
ngelo Mathews AFP (file photo)

Sri Lanka ODI captain Angelo Mathews came out strongly in support of SLC‘s decision to suspend opener Danushka Gunathilaka for six matches ahead of the ODI series against South Africa. Mathews insisted that though Sri Lanka will be hurt by Danushka’s absence, no cricketer is bigger than the sport, and the team will not tolerate breach of conduct of any sort.

“It is disappointing to lose out on a player, but we will not tolerate any indiscipline,” Mathews told Sunday Times Online (Sri Lanka). “If they take that risk they have to deal with the consequences, they can be the best player, but we will not tolerate that kind indiscipline. When it comes to team rules they have to abide by it. We do care what they do outside the ground, because it affects the whole team and the image. Players have to be very careful to take good care of themselves on and off the field not try and damage the team’s image.”

Leg-spinner Jeffrey Vandersay was issued a one-year suspended suspension for similar act during the West Indies series. Curiously, SLC had included Vandersay in the standby list for the ongoing ODI series against Sri Lanka.

The second ODI of the series will be played at Dambulla on August 1.