Sanga, Mahela bid adieu to ODI cricket

18 March 2015 12:50 pm - 20     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Kumar Sangakkara bid farewell to limited overs cricket today, disappointed with a World Cup quarter-final defeat but happy that Sri Lanka were in a better place than when he came into the side in 2000.

The elegant lefthander scored 45 runs against South Africa to take his tournament tally to 541, including his record four successive centuries, but it never looked like being enough as Sri Lanka were blown away at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

"It's disappointing to lose but to win against a side like South Africa we have to do really well," he told reporters.

"If you take our innings, it was a lot of stop starts, but a lot of wickets falling together ... We weren't good enough today.

"Someone has got to lose in a quarter-final. It's a do-or-die situation. Disappointments are a part of our career, and you just take it on the chin and move on."

The 37-year-old, who will continue playing tests, departs having accumulated 14,234 one-day runs -- second only to Indian great Sachin Tendulkar -- and the greatest number of dismissals by a wicketkeeper.

Although his hopes of playing in a third successive World Cup final and finally winning one have been dashed, Sangakkara thinks the future for Sri Lankan cricket is bright.

"We have a lot of people in the dressing room who would have learned a lot from this World Cup," he added.

"I think the team is in great hands. Angelo Mathews has been such an impressive leader right throughout. We've had a few injuries this tour, but if you look at the players we have, you can't but be positive about the future.

"I definitely think Sri Lankan cricket has progressed leaps and bounds from where we started and from where I started, and I have no fear about the future of Sri Lankan cricket. I think our guys will do very, very well."

Sangakkara's fellow former captain Mahela Jayawardene, also 37, is also calling time on his one-day career after the tournament, bringing an end to a career in which he has scored 12,650 runs in 448 matches.

"He's going to be sorely missed," Sangakkara said. "I'm sure he's going to be thoroughly disappointed today, but also, sometimes there is a bit of relief, as well, when your career ends.

"The high-pressure situations, the warmups, the ice baths, the recovery sessions, all of that, all repeated over 16, 17 years can get a bit much."

Sangakkara was clearly speaking also for himself and, looking down at the tape bound around his battered fingers, said he had no regrets about deciding to walk away.

"Retiring from cricket is not about form. I feel that the time is now and it's right," he said.

"I've tried to give everything I have when I've played the game, the game goes on. You can't hold onto it and people shouldn't be too sentimental.

"I think a lot better players and greater players have gone, and the game has gone on and there are new players who take the mantle, and in my case it won't be any different."(Reuters)
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  Comments - 20

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  • Kiris Baba Amaray Thursday, 19 March 2015 08:19 AM

    Great loss for SriLankan Cricket. At least, they should be in the Selective committee.

    Desmond Jeromme Thursday, 19 March 2015 08:20 AM

    Send Jayasuriya home and appoint Sanga or Mehela in place of him.

    Horri Jimonis Thursday, 19 March 2015 08:21 AM

    SriLankan Cricket is dead without these two talented guys.

    Vijith Pieterz Thursday, 19 March 2015 08:23 AM

    They should not enter the dirty politics like policy-less greedy Jayasuriya.

    Vijith Pieterz Thursday, 19 March 2015 08:29 AM

    Both should be honored - the title "Sir"

    idroos2002 Thursday, 19 March 2015 08:45 AM

    All the best wishes sanga and to mahela also .All what u did was selfless to SLC .We missed our chances due something foolish from the the Sri lankas first citizen in 2011 of which it was beyond your control

    Farook Thursday, 19 March 2015 02:28 PM

    well done sanga and mahela via DM Android App

    Benil Fernando Thursday, 19 March 2015 09:07 AM

    Appalled to see the Lankan batsmen last night. No footwork, you do not play spinners from the crease but otherwise. The Chief Selector has got no plans for the future , and should take the blame for team selection.As for bowling quicker they get rid of Vass would do lot of good.

    Kalana Thursday, 19 March 2015 10:03 AM

    Sanga too soon. Mahela too late.

    suganda priyanath Friday, 20 March 2015 09:50 PM

    sanga you and mahela you our heroes i love but i cant think you are not a play in the ground

    Premalal Thursday, 19 March 2015 11:00 AM

    Thank you Sangakkara and Mahela. You have the trust and the love of all people of this country. I hope and pray that you would think of saving this country from two sets of plunderers. Please give political leadership to a corrupt free society. God bless you both.

    L.S.A.Francis Friday, 20 March 2015 09:02 AM

    Santa n Mahela u are our heroes.May god bless both of u.Pl.support future cricket.

    Gobba Thursday, 19 March 2015 11:41 AM

    Thank you Guys for all the wonderful memories. But please get yourselves involved in SL Cricket. We need people like you around, not the bunch of crooks. Get Aravinda too join hands and continue your good work for SL Cricket. May God continue to bless u guys.

    shek Friday, 20 March 2015 12:03 AM

    this duo must be in the selection comitee. genuine players will bring in genuine talent. via DM Android App

    Christopher Silva Thursday, 19 March 2015 01:31 AM

    Sad end to our World Cup campaign. We choked and the better side won. We need to evolve and build-using young talented crickerters. Fairwell Sanga and Mahela, thank you for such wonderful memories.

    Navin Thursday, 19 March 2015 04:25 PM

    Sorry to see Sanga and Mahela go and as the great Sanga says the game must go on. All the best for their future plans. Professional cricketers must look after their fitness and improve in the fielding department. We were ill prepared, may be because the players only concentrate few weeks before the tournament.

    fFasly Rasik Friday, 20 March 2015 01:34 AM

    I really dissapointed, any way this is game, I fan of Sri Lanka cricket team, I thanks to Sir Sanga and Sir Mahela whom contribute too much Sri Lanka cricket. Insa Allah we will try win T20 world cup and next wold cup with new future Sri Lanka cricket team,. I am proud of Sri Lankan.

    Mevan Thursday, 19 March 2015 05:16 AM

    Thanks Sanga and Mahela for helping SL

    thasleem Thursday, 19 March 2015 01:35 PM

    thanks you sanga..n mahela u guys were masters of cricket..u have done the great job during ur careear.dont worry about the q.final 2015.we have to respect all sri lankan team n support.best of luck to our lions for bright future in cricket. via DM Android App

    pradeep Thursday, 19 March 2015 08:42 PM

    I am from India ,great fan of both.I am considered Sanga is the best batsman I have ever seen. It is a great loss for cricket. All the best for both...


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