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Sri Lankan cricketers arrive home
Colombo, Mar 4 (ANI):
Published on 5 Mar. 2009 12:59 AM IST
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The Sri Lankan cricket team arrived home from Pakistan by a special charted plane on Wednesday, a day after getting targeted by terrorists in Lahore. On Tuesday, around a dozen heavily armed assailants attacked the Sri Lankan cricket team’s bus and a police escort as they drove to Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium for the ongoing second and final Test. At least six cricketers were wounded, while six policemen and a driver were killed during the ambush. The cricketers’ return to Colombo saw an emotional reunion with anxious family members at the Bandarnaike international airport. Manager Brendon Kuruppu led the 25-member team, which was flown in by special Sri Lankan Airlines Airbus A320. All the injured Sri Lanka team members were fit enough to fly back to Colombo, but once they arrived, five players and assistant British coach Paul Farbrace went to a local medical center for further checks. “There were just these images of life flashing through my mind; all the while bullets were being sprayed at our bus, people around me were shouting,” spinner Muttiah Muralitharan said. Skipper Mahela Jayawardene told reporters at the airport that he was relieved to be home but admitted that it will take time to get over their experience. Ace batsman Thilan Samaraweera and Tharanga Paranavithana, who both received hospital treatment in Pakistan, were placed in an ambulance and taken to a private medical facility in Colombo, a senior official said. Sri Lanka’s Sports Minister Gamini Lokuge met the team at airport, amid tight security. Officials said Sri Lanka’s Foreign Secretary Palitha Kohona has travelled to Pakistan to be updated on the investigation. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse has also condemned the “cowardly terrorist attack”. The ICC is now considering whether Pakistan can co-host the cricket World Cup in 2011, due to be held across four South Asian countries in 2011. Pakistan invited Sri Lanka to tour only after India’s cricket team pulled out of a scheduled tour following the Mumbai attacks.

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