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Sri Lanka sports minister defends sudden Indian tour

Press Trust of India  |  Colombo 

sports minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage has defended the decision to undertake the unscheduled tour to

"Some say we were attracted to the 6-7 million dollars that we will be making. It was not the reason," Aluthgamage told reporters.

"It was a decision by the SLC and the selection committee. They wanted to give fringe players more opportunity."

Aluthgamage said the Indian tour was looked at as part of Sri Lanka's preparations for the world cup.

Asked to comment on the wisdom of the decision after three straight losses in the five match series, Aluthgamage said,"Although we have lost all 3 matches so far, we might beat in the World Cup."

The Lankan sports minister said playing remains the most profitable venture for the SLC.

"Playing India is where the money is. But money was not the only consideration," he defended.

agreed to play five ODIs as the stop gap team when the pulled out of the Indian tour.

The decision drew fire from seniors who claimed that the hurriedly undertaken tour had upset Sri Lanka's fitness programme aimed at conditioning the players towards the World Cup.

First Published: Wed, November 12 2014. 20:42 IST