Monday, March 2, 2009

Five Sri Lankan cricketers injured in terror attack in Pakistan

Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene is reported to be one of those injured in the ambush

To keep track of live updates, please go to Cricinfo's Live Blog

Source: BBC

At least five members of the Sri Lankan cricket team have been injured in a shooting incident in the Pakistani city of Lahore, a Sri Lankan minister says.

Sports Minister Gamini Lokuge told the BBC said that early reports said indicated that the injuries to five players and a coach were minor.

The incident happened when unidentified gunmen fired on a convoy carrying Sri Lankan and Pakistani cricketers.

Unconfirmed reports say some policemen had been killed by the shooting.

Sri Lankan media reports said two of the players including Thilan Samaraweera, who scored a double century in the ongoing Test match, have been taken to hospital.

The convoy was carrying Pakistani and Sri Lankan cricketers to the Gaddafi stadium, which is hosting a Test match between the two sides. The third day of play in the Second Test was scheduled to begin.

Source: Cricinfo

Five Sri Lankan players have been injured in a terrorist attack near the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. Mahela Jayawardene, Ajantha Mendis, Kumar Sangakkara, Thilan Samaraweera and Tharanga Paranavitana are those being treated in hospital for minor injuries.

The Sri Lankans were on their way to the Gaddafi Stadium when their bus was attacked by five armed terrorists near Liberty market. Habibur Rehman, chief commissioner of police, said 12 masked terrorists fired at the Sri Lankan team bus. The gunmen shot at the wheels of the bus and also injured the driver. A grenade was also thrown at the bus but it missed. The incident puts the ongoing second Test and the tour in doubt.

"The bus came under attack as we were driving to the stadium, the gunmen targeted the wheels of the bus first and then the bus," Mahela Jayawardene told Cricinfo. "We all dived to the floor to take cover. About five players have been injured and also Paul Farbrace [a member of the support staff], but most of the injuries appear to be minor at this stage and caused by debris."

Sad isn't it. India were to play in Pakistan for a test series but after the Mumbai attacks, the Indians pulled out and are playing New Zealand instead. Pakistan hadn't played a home test match in 14 months and were desperate for an opponent. Sri Lanka volunteered as a gesture of goodwill to play two test matches. The fist test match went without a hitch and was a draw. The second rest match was underway but as the SL team bus arrived at the stadium for Day 3 it was ambushed. It's so sad that a team gets attacked because of a gesture of goodwill.

The ICC (International Cricket Council) must ban Pakistan indefinitely from all future cricket events.


Anonymous said...

I haven't read much of the data yet, but I would not necessarily code this as having to do with India-Pakistan issues. The LTTE is losing in the face of the Sri Lankan government onslaught - this seems like a way of raising the profile of the beleaguered group in a relatively unsecure region.

Please let us know as details emerge.

Degenerasian said...

I've added Cricinfo's Live blog to the post.

Sri Lankans are being airlifted to the airport as we speak.

sameer said...

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