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Cricket world shocked by attack on Sri Lankan team

News18test sharma |

Updated: March 3, 2009, 12:26 PM IST
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Cricket world shocked by attack on Sri Lankan team
At least six Sri Lankan cricketers were injured when gunmen opened fire at them.

New Delhi: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Tuesday expressed its sorrow and anguish over the dastardly attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore, where six players were injured.

"We pray for the speedy recovery of the injured cricketers, and sympathise with their families and compatriots," BCCI Secretary N Srinivasan said in a statement issued in New Delhi.

"The BCCI stands alongside Sri Lanka Cricket in this hour of crisis," he said.

At least six Sri Lankan cricketers were injured when unidentified gunmen opened fire at them killing five police personnel escorting the team to the Gaddafi Stadium for the third day of the second Test.

The injured cricketers include Kumar Sangakkara, Ajantha Mendis and Thilan Samaraweera.

Cricket Australia Chief Executive Officer James Sutherland said his Board was shocked to learn that Sri Lankan team was attacked in Pakistan and hoped for the safety of players following the incident.

"Australian cricket has many friends in Sri Lanka and in Pakistan and we sincerely hope they are all safe after this awful incident," he said in a statement issued in Melbourne.

"Early reports are unclear but we are deeply saddened to hear reports that security officials in Pakistan have been killed in this attack. We will be seeking to talk to Sri Lankan and Pakistan cricket officials as soon as possible to pass on our condolences," he said.

He, however, did not comment on the fate of five One-Day International matches and a Twenty20 fixture in late April/May in the Middle East to be played between Australia and Pakistan.

Australia last year refused to tour Pakistan owing to safety concerns which Champions Trophy was also pulled out of that country following opposition from various cricketing nations due to security reasons.

International Cricket Council Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat also condemned the attack.

"We note with dismay and regret the events of this morning in Lahore and we condemn this attack without reservation. It is a source of great sadness that there have been a number of fatalities in this attack and it is also very upsetting for the wider cricket family that some of the Sri Lanka players and one match official have been injured in this attack. At this time our thoughts and prayers are with the injured people and also the families of those who have died," said Lorgat in a statement.

"We have confirmed with both member boards that the remainder of the tour has been cancelled and we are working hard to get our match officials out of the area as safely and as quickly as possible. I know, also, that the Pakistan Cricket Board is working with Sri Lanka Cricket to make sure the players are flown home at the earliest opportunity," he added.

"The terror attack on Sri Lankan cricketers in Lahore will certainly have an impact on the 2011 World Cup to be co-hosted by India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh," BCCI Chief administrative Officer, Ratnakar Shetty.

First Published: March 3, 2009, 12:26 PM IST
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