Sri Lankan captain Chandimal pleads not guilty to ball tampering

Opener Devon Smith pulls during his unbeaten half-century in today’s rain-hit second day of the second Test in St Lucia

Opener Devon Smith pulls during his unbeaten half-century in today’s rain-hit second day of the second Test in St Lucia

It was on Saturday that Chandimal refused to take the field along with his teammates after the on-field umpires Ian Gould and Aleem Dar charged them to alter the conditions of the ball. The match eventually resumed after a two-hour delay, but Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) have said the players are effectively continuing with the game "under protest".

The umpires suspected that the visitors' skipper Dinesh Chandimal changed the condition of the ball and chose to change it which didn't go down well with the team.

Their players protested the charge and the subsequent penalty of a ball change and the award of five extra runs to the opposition by refusing to take the field at the start of the third day's play.

Sri Lankan captain Dinesh Chandimal has denied ball-tampering by using candies and will face a hearing at the conclusion of the ongoing second Test against the West Indies, the International Cricket Council (ICC) said Sunday.

But after initially appearing to be prepared to resume the match, the Sri Lankans hesitated even as they were making their way out to the middle, resulting in further discussions before they were finally persuaded to get the day's play underway two hours later than scheduled.

Sri Lanka protested by refusing to leave its dressing room for almost 90 minutes.

The ICC release on Sunday also stated: "The officials laid the charge after television footage from the final session's play on Friday appeared to show the Sri Lanka captain taking candies out from his left pocket and putting these in his mouth, before applying the artificial substance to the ball which the umpires viewed as an attempt to change its condition".

Steve Smith, along with David Warner, was handed a one-year ban from both domestic and global cricket by Cricket Australia while batsman Bancroft was handed a nine-month suspension for their involvement in the incident.

Mendis contributed 87 before Niroshan Dickwella continued the revival with an important 62 to usher Sri Lanka to 8-334 and a lead of 287 at stumps as they seek to level the three-match series at 1-1.

Impressive seamer Lahiru Kumara was the leading bowler with four for 86 while debutant pacer Kasun Rajitha claimed three for 49 and fellow speedster Suranga Lakmal, two for 50.

Gabriel, inspired by his five-wicket haul in the first innings, found the edge of left-hander Kusal Perera's bat in the penultimate over of the day for wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich to gobble up an easy catch.

Mahela Udawatte, on Test debut, was left on 11, and nightwatchman Rajitha was yet to score.

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