T20 League brought nothing but disrepute: Ranatunga
Ridiculing the Indian T20 League for turning cricketers into a bunch of avaricious people, World Cup winning Sri Lankan captain Arjuna Ranatunga on Thursday said that the cash-awash league has given Indian cricket nothing but disrepute.cricket Updated: May 30, 2013 15:23 IST
Ridiculing the Indian T20 League for turning cricketers into a bunch of avaricious people, World Cup winning Sri Lankan captain Arjuna Ranatunga on Thursday said that the cash-awash league has given Indian cricket nothing but disrepute.
The league is embroiled in a spot-fixing scandal, leading to arrest of pacer S Sreesanth and several others including the BCCI president's son-in-law on charges of betting.
"I am not surprised with the current spot-fixing and betting scandal in the league. It has been happening from the beginning. Each and every season had issues like betting, fixing, alcohol, drugs. I think it never gave anything to Indian cricket. Indian cricket has never got such bad name in world cricket," Ranatunga told PTI-Bhasha over phone from Colombo.
Ranatunga said it pained him to see that some of the former greats are backing the event just because they too are getting monetary benefits out of it.
"I feel hurt that past greats are trying to cover up as they are earning money through it. There are only a few like Erapalli Prasanna who have criticised it," he said without naming the greats.
He also said not only Indian but world cricket is getting affected by it.
"It is making cricketers greedy. Everyone wants to play T20 now and the focus has been shifted. I don't understand what the need is for such a league. What has Indian cricket gained from it? It is spoiling players. I don't remember any world class player produced from the T20 league," he said.
"India will not get Tendulkars, Dravids or Gavaskars from this. BCCI's domestic structure is good enough to produce good cricketers, so what is the need of this league?" he asked.
Ranatunga also said that the T20 League was always under the radar for corruption and former ICC Anti Corruption chief Sir Paul Condon had indicated this in the first season itself.
"Paul Condon had given a document to the ICC board regarding fixing in the T20 League in 2008 in which he had warned that the league would pose a great threat of corruption," said the former captain.
He said the BCCI should have acted at that time if they were keen to stop corruption.
When asked about the reports that some Indian bookies are benami owners of franchises in the Sri Lanka Premier League, he said that there should be a proper probe.
"I have seen such reports. I was totally against having such a league which brings unwanted things in cricket. If there are any truth in these reports, there should be a proper probe into it," said the veteran batsman.
He also suggested that there should be an independent inquiry into the spot-fixing scandal and Indian government should be involved in the probe.
"I think the solution lies in bringing cricket board under sports ministry like in Sri Lanka," he said.