"Danushka Gunathilaka has been arrested"
Sri Lankan cricketer Danushka Gunathilaka has been charged in relation to an alleged sexual assault while at the T20 World Cup in Australia.
It was 1 am local time on November 6, 2022, when Gunathilaka was arrested by police and taken from the Sri Lankan team hotel, on Sussex Street in Sydney.
Gunathilaka has been charged with four counts of sexual intercourse without consent.
It is alleged he sexually assaulted a 29-year-old woman on November 2.
The arrest came hours after Sri Lanka’s final game of the World Cup – a four-wicket defeat by England.
Police confirmed a Sri Lankan national was arrested, explaining that the suspect and victim met on a dating app.
The statement read: “The woman met with the man after communicating with him for a number of days via an online dating application; it’s alleged he then sexually assaulted her on the evening of November 2.
“As part of ongoing investigations, a crime scene examination was undertaken by specialist police at an address in Rose Bay yesterday.
“Following further inquiries, a 31-year-old man was arrested at a hotel on Sussex Street, Sydney, shortly before 1 am today.
“He was taken to Sydney City Police Station and charged with four counts of sexual intercourse without consent.”
Gunathilaka has been denied bail. He is set to appear in court on November 7, 2022.
After the information was made widely known, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) released a statement.
The statement read: “Sri Lanka Cricket confirms that it was notified by the ICC that player Danushka Gunathilaka has been arrested on the allegations of sexual assault of a woman in Sydney, and Mr Gunathilaka is due to appear in court tomorrow.
“SLC will closely monitor the proceedings in court and, in consultation with the ICC, will expeditiously initiate a thorough inquiry into the matter and take stern action against the player if found guilty.”
New South Wales Australia Sex Crimes Squad commander, Jayne Doherty said that the victim went through all the necessary precautions to protect her safety.
This included meeting in a public place and waiting for multiple days of speaking online before agreeing to meet up for a date:
“It was just unfortunate. It has nothing to do with meeting on a dating app or anything.”
Gunathilaka was ruled out of the T20 World Cup with injury on October 20 but remained with the squad.
After losing to England at the SCG on Saturday at the T20 World Cup, his teammates took a flight home a few hours later.
The winners of Group 2 will play England in the semifinals at Adelaide on Thursday, November 10, 2022.
On November 9, New Zealand will take on the Group 2 runner-up at the Sydney Cricket Ground.