ECB and Sri Lanka back on track

The Bolton News: Sachithra Senanayake's action has come under scrutiny Sachithra Senanayake's action has come under scrutiny

Relations between the England and Wales Cricket Board and Sri Lanka Cricket are back on track after the issue of Sachithra Senanayake's bowling action threatened to plant a wedge between them.

Senanayake was reported for an illegal action during the Royal London one-day series, causing significant rancour in the tourists' camp.

The matter threatened to cause further fallout when captain Angelo Mathews was reported as telling BBC Sinhala, in Sinhalese, that England had instigated the probe into Senanayake because they disliked facing him.

The newspaper also suggested ECB chairman Giles Clarke had referred the comments to the International Cricket Council in pursuit of an apology.

Sri Lanka team manager Michael de Zoysa banned questions on the subject at Mathews' press conference on the eve of the second Investec Test, but did say: "The matter has been resolved amicably. There is no further comment."

An SLC statement had earlier been published by The Sunday Times, distancing the governing body from the paper's story.

It read: "SLC wishes to express its surprise and disappointment at your accusation levelled against Mr. Giles Clarke. Mr. Clarke, who has been a great friend of SLC and Sri Lanka, has been a pillar of strength to the Cricket in Sri Lanka and its growth unconditionally."

Cook had earlier answered questions on the subject, confirming there had been no ECB interference on Senanayake but leaving little doubt that England harboured concerns over his action.

"We as players have no power to report anyone," he said.

"It's directly down to the umpires and the match referee. I know that for a fact. So we can't say anything, it's down to the ICC and the umpires on the day.

"(But) I think everyone saw his action and I think concerns were raised - you only had to watch TV and see that. Concerns were raised just by watching the TV."

Asked if the furore would lead to England all-rounder Moeen Ali declining to use his nascent 'doosra', Cook pointedly added: "No, because you don't have to bowl a doosra by throwing it."

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