The International Cricket Council (ICC) have replaced Sri Lanka as hosts for the Men’s U19 World Cup scheduled to be played next year and appointed South Africa to stage the tournament.
The decision comes as a result of cricket’s world governing body controlling the fundings made to Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) after it had suspended the national board for breaching its obligations as a member, namely for failing to manage its affairs autonomously and without government interference.
Cricket South Africa (CSA) had hosted the event in 2020 as well, with the games being hosted in Kimberley, Bloemfontein, Potchefstroom and Benoni. Earlier this year, the Women’s T20 World Cup was also hosted in the country, which is going to host the next ODI World Cup in 2027.
The previous U19 World Cup had been staged in the Caribbean and won by India, who clinched the title for a fifth time.
Why the ICC had suspended SLC?
The development had come on the heels of a turbulent World Cup campaign by the islanders, where they failed to progress through to the knockouts and won just the two games from their nine league stage outings.
Following the dismal performance from the Sri Lankan men’s team at the ODI World Cup in India, Sri Lankan Sports Minister Roshan Ranasinghe had sacked the SLC management and appointed former World Cup-winning captain Arjuna Ranatunga as the head of a seven-member interim committee to govern the cricket board. However, that was overturned by the Court of Appeal.
Later in the week, the Sri Lankan parliament had unanimously passed a resolution demanding the sacking of SLC. Parties from both sides of the aisle had supported it. That resolution, passed by Sri Lankan parliament, was what irked the ICC, who have it in their guidelines to oversee an autonomous running of its member boards.