SL cricketer suspended after friend accused of rape

SL cricketer suspended after friend accused of rape

Dhanushka Gunathilaka, 27, and his friend, who cannot be named, took two Norwegian women to the hotel where the player was staying in Colombo in the early hours of Sunday. Reuters photo

A Sri Lankan Test cricketer has been suspended from the team after a Norwegian woman accused his friend of raping her in a hotel room where he was present, an official said Monday.

Dhanushka Gunathilaka, 27, and his friend, who cannot be named, took two Norwegian women to the hotel where the player was staying in Colombo in the early hours of Sunday.

One of the women later accused the second man, a British passport-holder of Sri Lankan origin, of raping her and police arrested him.

The 26-year-old "is under arrest and we are continuing our investigations," a police official told AFP. "A Norwegian tourist made the complaint of rape."

He said there was no allegation against Gunathilaka, who is currently Sri Lanka's best-performing batsman in an ongoing tour by South Africa.

However, Sri Lanka Cricket on Sunday night suspended him on a "misconduct" charge, although he is allowed to play in the match that is currently taking place.

The governing body's rules stipulate that during matches players must be back in their hotel rooms by midnight and cannot have guests.

The cricket board will also "withheld Gunathilaka's fee for the ongoing Test match until the outcome of the inquiry," it said.

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