On 9 May 2021, following four days of hearing conducted in April and May 2021, former Sri Lankan ex-international cricketer Nuwan Zoysa was cleared of corruption charges in disciplinary proceedings brought by the International Cricket Council (‘ICC’) before its Anti-Corruption Tribunal.
Ali Bajwa QC, together with Manoj Rupasinghe and a team of lawyers at Lloyds PR Solicitors acted for Mr Zoysa.
Mr Zoysa made his debut as a fast-medium bowler for Sri Lanka in 1997 and over the course of the next decade went on to play in 125 international matches (30 test matches and 95 ODIs). He was the first bowler in test history to take a hat-trick from his first three balls in a test match (in 1999 against Zimbabwe). Following his retirement as a player, Mr Zoysa was appointed the assistant fast bowling coach for Sri Lanka Cricket in 2015.
The proceedings related to an allegation by the ICC that Mr Zoysa, together with another coach, Avishka Gunawardana, made a corrupt approach to two players during a T10 tournament in the United Arab Emirates in 2017.
The disciplinary hearing was conducted by video-link before Michael Heron QC (in New Zealand), HHJ Peters QC (in London) and Imtiaz Asif (in Bangladesh), sitting between 06:00 and 11:00 each day in order to accommodate all the time zones involved.
The Tribunal decided that Mr Zoysa should be cleared of three charges of corruption in relation to the allegations; upholding just one charge in relation to his failing to have a compelling justification for not attending on 6 March 2019 an ICC interview.
Mr Gunawardana, represented by Mark Milliken-Smith QC (2 Bedford Row) and Mr Rupasinghe/Lloyds PR, was also cleared of all corruption charges and is now entirely free to resume his cricket career.