June 17 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka’s cricketers were continuing their second test against West Indies ‘under protest’ after they were accused by match officials of altering the condition of the ball.
Sri Lanka’s players refused to take the field on the third day of the match in St Lucia on Saturday, delaying the resumption of play for almost two hours, after the International Cricket Council (ICC) said umpires Aleem Dar and Ian Gould had changed the ball and awarded West Indies five penalty runs.
“The ICC can confirm the match officials in the second test between West Indies and Sri Lanka changed the ball and awarded 5 penalty runs to West Indies,” the ICC said in a statement on their Twitter feed.
“If there are any, Code of Conduct charges will follow as per usual at close of play.”
Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) said the team had denied any wrongdoing.
“SLC advised the team to take the field to ensure the continuity of the match and wish to commend the decision taken by the team to continue with the game ‘under protest’ to ensure the upholding of the spirit of the game,” the organisation said in a statement on Cricinfo (www.espncricinfo.com).
“The team management has informed us that Sri Lankan players have not engaged in any wrongdoing.
“SLC shall take all necessary steps to defend any player, in the event any unwarranted allegation is brought against a member of the team.”
Sri Lanka were 34 for one in their second innings at the end of the third day, trailing West Indies by 13 runs after the hosts were dismissed for 300.
West Indies won the first test by 226 runs. (Reporting by Greg Stutchbury in Wellington; Editing by John O’Brien)