Former Sri Lanka cricket captain Arjuna Ranatunga is upset that Sri Lankan players are continuing to participate in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 despite the island nation going through an economic crisis. Different parts of Sri Lanka have erupted in protest as the island nation is facing its worst-ever economic crisis, notwithstanding its world happiness rankings that are superior to India’s.
Sri Lanka is experiencing a severe shortage of rations, fuel and essential items, including medical supplies.
Ranatunga urged the Sri Lanka cricketers taking part in IPL 2022 to leave the 15th season immediately and join the protests. “I am sure you all know who the players playing in the IPL are. I don’t want to mention it, but I would want them to leave their job for a week and come in support of the protests. I really don’t know, but there are some cricketers who are lavishly playing in the IPL and haven’t spoken about their country. Unfortunately, people are scared to speak against the government. These cricketers are also working for the cricket board under the ministry, and they are trying to protect their jobs. But now they have to take a step as some of the young cricketers also came forward and gave statements in support of the protest,” Ranatunga said.
“When something is going wrong, you should have the guts to come out and speak against it without thinking about your business. People ask me why I am not in the protests. It’s just that I have been into politics for the last 19 years, and this is not a political issue. So far, none of the political parties and politicians have got into the protests, and that’s the biggest strength of the people of this country,” Ranatunga told news agency ANI.
Quite a few Sri Lanka players, including the legendary Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene and Lasith Malinga, are part of IPL 2022, working in various roles for different franchises. Among Sri Lankan cricketers who have not retired yet, Wanindu Hasaranga, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Dushmantha Chameeera, Chamika Karunaratne and Maheesh Theekshana are part of different squads.