Chandika Hathurusingha, the sacked Sri Lanka coach, on Sunday has demanded USD 5 million as compensation from Sri Lank Cricket (SLC) over the premature termination of his contract.
According to a report in AFP, the former Sri Lankan Test star and coach made the claim after the two sides failed to agree the terms of his termination last summer. “He has sent a letter of demand asking for 5 million,” board secretary Mohan de Silva told AFP.
The contents of Hathurisingha’s letter were not fully available, but according to a report in the Sunday Island newspaper, he has sought his full salary for the remaining 18 months of his contract which amounted to just over a million dollars. He has also claimed that his reputation as an international coach suffered as a result of what he called the wrongful termination. His claim of USD 5 million includes damages as well as the wages he says are due to him.
Sri Lanka Cricket have been willing to pay only six months’ salary as compensation, the Island said, adding that the coach was in receipt of a take-home salary of USD 60,000 a month at the time of termination.
Hathurusingha and his entire coaching staff were sacked following Sri Lanka’s dismal performance at the ICC World Cup 2019 where they finished in sixth place. The then sports minister Harin Fernando insisted that Hathurusingha was overpaid and accused him of failing to produce results. Fernando said Sri Lanka could have hired a foreign coach at half the price paid to Hathurusingha.
After the sacking of Hathurusingha and his team, Sri Lanka have introduced major changes. They appointed South African Mickey Arthur as head coach in December. Former Zimbabwe Test player Grant Flower has been appointed the new national batting coach, Australian David Saker was made bowling coach while Shane McDermott was placed in charge of fielding training. The board has not discussed the terms of their two-year contracts.