Former Sri Lanka Test player Avishka Gunawardene has been cleared of match-fixing charges by an independent tribunal, cricket’s world governing body announced Monday. The independent anti-corruption tribunal also dismissed three out of four charges made against another former Sri Lankan international, Nuwan Zoysa, who was last month banned from cricket for six years. Both players had been accused of trying to fix matches in a T10 tournament in the United Arab Emirates in 2017.
An International Cricket Council (ICC) statement said the tribunal had “unanimously” cleared Gunawardene, 43, who played six Tests and 61 one-day internationals for Sri Lanka.
The ICC said Gunawardene, who went on to become a Sri Lanka A coach, was free to take up cricket activities again.
Gunawardene had been accused of “facilitating” match-fixing and failing to disclose approaches to the ICC’s anti-corruption unit.
The ICC declined to make any other comment on the case.
Zoysa, 42, who was a bowling coach after his career of 30 Tests and 95 one-day internationals, was cleared of three out of the four charges against him, but his six-year ban will continue, the ICC said.
He has been cleared of directly being a party to corruption, influencing others and failing to disclose full details of an approach to fix a match, but the charge of failing to cooperate with investigators stands.
Last month, another former Sri Lanka fast bowler, Dilhara Lokuhettige, was banned for eight years for trying to fix the same T10 tournament in 2017.
Sri Lanka introduced a law against match-fixing in 2019 after then-sports minister Harin Fernando declared that the ICC considered it the world’s most corrupt cricket nation.
Former Sri Lanka skipper Sanath Jayasuriya was banned for two years in October 2018 for failing to cooperate with a match-fixing inquiry.
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