Danushka Gunathilaka: Sri Lankan cricketer charged over alleged sexual assault of a woman

Sri Lankan cricketer Danushka Gunathilaka has been charged over the alleged sexual assault of a woman after being arrested in Sydney while on tour for the T20 Cricket World Cup.

Police said detectives started an investigation on Saturday after receiving reports that a 29-year-old woman had been sexually assaulted at a home in Sydney's Rose Bay earlier in the week.

Officers say the woman met Gunathilaka after communicating with him for several days on a dating app before the alleged assault on Wednesday.

The batter was arrested at his hotel in the Australian city early on Sunday morning.

New South Wales police said the 31-year-old cricketer was charged with four counts of sexual intercourse without consent.

He was refused bail and is expected to face charges in court on Monday.

Detective Superintendent Jayne Doherty said the woman took steps to ensure her safety, including communicating with the man for several days before meeting and going for a date in a public place.

"It was just unfortunate. It has nothing to do with meeting on a dating app or anything," Ms Doherty said.

She added: "The pair met up in Sydney at a prearranged meeting. They had drinks and went for something to eat before going back to the young lady's home.

"Police will allege that whilst they were in her home, the male assaulted the female a couple of times."

Sri Lankan Cricket said it would closely monitor court proceedings and, in consultation with the International Cricket Council, would launch an inquiry into the matter.

Gunathilaka travelled to Australia with Sri Lanka's T20 World Cup team but didn't play after being ruled out of the competition with a hamstring tear.

The left-handed batsman has played nearly 100 T20 and one-day internationals for Sri Lanka as well as eight test matches.