Sri Lankan fans during an ODI (Getty Images)

It has been almost a year since the dreadful scene at Pallekele when Sri Lankan fans vented their ire by throwing empty bottles on the ground as India were cruising to victory. The play was halted for over 30 minutes as India were just eight runs away from sealing the win.

Now, another piece of news, this time heartening, is emerging from the same venue as the fans there have now been pictured cleaning the garbage after the conclusion of two ODIs against South Africa.

They probably took cue from the Japanese football fans who stole the limelight during the FIFA World Cup in Russia as they were repeatedly seen cleaning after themselves. Even the Japanese football team, after a heartbreaking defeat to Belgium, cleaned their locker room and left a thank you message for their hosts.

The gesture of the Sri Lankan fans has been appreciated by batting legend Kumar Sangakkara and the national cricket board.

As per a report in ESPNcricinfo, students from Pallekele’s South Eastern University began the initiative during the third ODI defeat to South Africa. It was then repeated during the rain-affected fourth ODI that the hosts went on to win by DLS method.

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) posted a video of the fans picking up garbage, thanking them on Twitter.



Even Sangakkara expressed his happiness on Twitter.

Sri Lanka have already lost the five-match ODI series after South Africa won the third ODI to seal a 3-0 win. However, they win the fourth game and will be aiming to finish the series on a high when the two teams meet againt on August 12 at R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo for the final match.