Sri Lanka suspend Danushka Gunathilaka from all forms of cricket

The left-hand batter has been suspended from international cricket after allegations of sexual assault against a woman. 
Danushka Gunathilaka

Sri Lanka have suspended their batter Danushka Gunathilaka from all forms of cricket with immediate effect after allegations of rape against him in Australia at the sidelines of the T20 World Cup 2022. 

In a statement issued on Monday (November 7), Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) said the left-hand batter will not be considered for selection after the board was informed that he was "arrested and charged for sexual assault of a woman in Australia". 

"Furthermore, Sri Lanka Cricket will take the necessary steps to promptly carry out an inquiry into the alleged offense, and, upon conclusion of the aforementioned court case in Australia, steps will be taken to penalize the said player if found guilty," the statement said. 

"Sri Lanka Cricket wishes to emphasize that it adopts a zero tolerance policy for any such conduct by a player and will provide all the required support to the Australian law enforcement authorities to carry out an impartial inquiry into the incident."

Gunathilaka's charges came to light a day after Sri Lanka's exit from the T20 World Cup in Australia, with the Police in Sydney confirming that the player had been charged and taken into custody for accusations of sexual misconduct against a lady based in the city.

Danushka Gunathilaka suspended from international cricket 

With the player arrested by the New South Wales police, the Sri Lankan team left for home without him, stated a PTI report on Sunday (November 6) when the charges came to public eye and sent a shockwave around the cricket world. 

In their statement at the time, the NSW Police had mentioned an unmamed Sri Lankan individual to have been found involved in alleged misconduct with an Australian lady. 

"The woman met with the man after communicating with him for a number of days via an online dating application; it's alleged he then sexually assaulted her on the evening of Wednesday 2 November 2022," the PTI report added from the details mentioned in the NSW police website. 

"As part of ongoing investigations, a crime scene examination was undertaken by specialist police at an address in Rose Bay yesterday. Following further inquiries, a 31-year-old man was arrested at a hotel on Sussex Street, Sydney, shortly before 1am today (Sunday 6 November 2022)."

Gunathilaka had stayed put in Australia despite being ruled out of the tournament with an injury after Sri Lanka's first game of the preliminary round against Namibia. 

The experienced international finds himself in trouble over disciplinary reasons again after multiple previous breaches of SLC's regulations. This isn't the first time Gunathilaka finds allegations made against his name over sexual misconduct against a woman. Back then also, the player had been made to serve a lengthy suspension period out of the international scene.