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Rediff News  All News  » Cricket » Sri Lanka reeling under $23 mln debt after World Cup

Sri Lanka reeling under $23 mln debt after World Cup

April 11, 2011 22:28 IST

Despite Sri Lanka's success on field at the recently concluded cricket World Cup, the Emerald Island's cricket Board has faced losses to the tune of $23million.

Sri Lanka Cricket on Monday said it is saddled with a $23million debt after cost overruns and hefty bills incurred building stadiums for the recent World Cup.

"We spent a lot of money to host the World Cup, to build two stadiums and rebuild one stadium. The World Cup left us a 2.5 billion rupee ($22.6 million) deficit," Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage said.

Sri Lanka, which lost the final to India by six wickets, hosted 12 matches during the World Cup, with others held in India and Bangladesh.

The island built two new grounds in the southern town of Hambantota and the central town of Pallekele, while nearly $8 million was spent to renovate the Colombo-based R Premadasa stadium.

"We spent about five billion rupees ($45.3 million dollars) to build the three World Cup venues," Aluthgamage said.

The minister said the governing body was forced to pledge the newly built stadiums, along with income from upcoming tours, as collateral to raise funds to pay for the lavish tournament that ended on April 2.

Sri Lanka Cricket treasurer Sujeewa Rajapakse said the board took a $21.5 million loan from state-run Bank of Ceylon and another $3.5 million loan from the International Cricket Council (ICC) to tide them over the shortfall.