Authorities said Wednesday that three Sri Lankan cricketers ordered to leave the Tour of England for disciplinary reasons will be eliminated in the local series against India in July. Deputy captain Kusal Mendis, starter Danushka Gunathilaka and goalkeeper Niroshan Dickwella, called the “horrible trio” by the media, returned home Tuesday. Officials with the Sri Lankan cricket team said they will begin to investigate how they left the team’s pandemic isolation hotel in England after two weeks of mandatory quarantine. Of the three international one-day games and the three Twenty20 games that started on July 13, none of the games will be included.
“They are likely to get a minimum one-year suspension if found guilty of several breaches of their contract,” one official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Before Durham’s first ODI, they were seen breaking the biosecurity bubble, and the three were also withdrawn from the three-day international series against England.
Mendis and Dickwella were seen smoking in the streets of Durham, where they were stationed before the ODI series.
In the second video on social media, Gunathilaka was seen joining the couple, violating the coronavirus regulations for their stay.
England won the first ODI on Tuesday with five wickets. The second ODI will be played on Thursday, and the final will be played on Sunday.
Sri Lanka was shut out in the T20 series against England. After losing the fifth series in a row, disgruntled fans launched a campaign to avoid the team on social media.
The hashtag #unfollowcricketers began to trend on Facebook on Sunday as thousands of fans boycotted the social media pages of Mendis and Gunathilaka, reports said.
Fans were also sharing memes asking each other not to watch the national team on television.