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Sri Lanka orders its IPL cricketers to return home

April 13, 2011 - Colombo

Sri Lanka's Sports Minister Mahinadananda Althugamage has ordered all of its cricketers playing in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) to return home for training ahead of next month's tour of England.

Althugamage said that he wanted KUmar Sangakkarra, Mahela Jayawardene and Lasith Malinga, and others to prioritise their commitment to the national side over the lucrative IPL.

"In future, national cricket players can participate in foreign tournaments only in a manner that will not affect practices of the Sri Lankan national team," The Dawn quoted his ministry, as saying in a statement.

It said those who are selected for the three-Test series in England will have to return home for practices despite their commitments in the ongoing IPL Twenty20 tournament.

Former skipper Kumar Sangakkarra and his deputy Mahela Jayawardene are among 11 Sri Lankan national players in the IPL and at least five of them are tipped to be included in the squad for England.

The statement, however, did not say how the players will be penalised if they did not attend practices as required under a new sports ministry decree, but official sources said they were likely to be dropped if they did not comply.


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