Colombo: Sri Lankan authorities on Saturday said they would initiate criminal action against two men managing the women’s cricket team following allegations they demanded sexual favours from team members to guarantee their positions.

Sports ministry spokesman Srilal Gomes said a disciplinary inquiry initiated in November uncovered evidence of “sexual harassment” against women players and a report was submitted on Thursday.

“This is a very serious matter and the next step will be to take internal disciplinary action in addition to a criminal prosecution under the penal code,” said Gomes.

He did not name the officials or players, but said criminal action in line with women and child protection laws was being taken.

An independent panel was asked in November to investigate local media allegations that unidentified players were dropped from the team for refusing to have sex with sports officials.