Sri Lanka Cricket lift ban on Danushka Gunathilaka; eligible for national return

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) on Tuesday, October 17 lifted the ban imposed on Danushka Gunathilaka following the sexual assault charges imposed in Australia. The Sri Lanka cricket board released an official statement on the cricketer, hoping his return to the game soon.

This move comes after he was acquitted of all charges by the District Court in New South Wales, making him eligible for a return. In a post on X, the Sri Lanka Cricket stated, “Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) wishes to announce that the Independent Inquiry Committee appointed by SLC, which was taken with investigating into the impact of the criminal allegations against Mr. Danishka Gunathilaka in Australian has recommended a full lifting of the ban imposed on him in November 2022 following Mr. Gunathilaka’s acquittal from all charges filed in the District Court of New South Wales and his return to Sri Lanka on 3 rd  October 2023.”

It is to be noted that the Sri Lanka cricketer was suspended by the board in November 2022 during the T20 World Cup in Australia. Thereafter he was under strict travel restriction in Australia and faced a full trial in the District Court of New South Wales.

He was pleaded not guilty and faced a four-day long trial before later being acquitted of all filed charges. The 32-year-old returned to the island nation on October 3 and has not been made eligible for a return, seeing his likely appearance at the ongoing World Cup in India.

“They have also cautioned Mr. Gunathilaka to always uphold his status as a representative of the nation in all future actions,” the SLC statement concluded with the authorities allowing him to resume regular cricket activities and return to national duty.

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