Kumar Sangakkara has stepped down as captain of Sri Lanka’s ODI and T20 teams but has offered to continue as the Test captain on an interim basis for the forthcoming series against England and Australia “if this is considered helpful for the new captain”.
What a sensible, future thinking, professional decision by a true sportsman who is not driven by personal glory and money. Sri Lanka will lose the best diplomatic captain ever produced but it will be an investment for the future. Well done Sanga, you have made all Sri Lankans proud by the way you lead the team, the way you spoke & handled the media and finally the way how you have stepped down. Wish you good health in the future as we still need Kumar Sangakkara as a batsman / wicket keeper for Sri Lanka Cricket in many more years to come. Your inclusion in the side with Mahela will give great confidence to the new captain and the youngsters in the side. You must take over the role as the “mental groomer” of the side in preparing them for 2015 world cup in Australia / NZ.
His decision, revealed on Tuesday, comes days after he led Sri Lanka to the World Cup final. Tillakaratne Dilshan and Angelo Mathews are among those tipped to take charge of the limited-overs’ sides, while Thilan Samaraweera is being discussed as an option to lead the Test team.
Sangakkara was the third highest scorer in the 2011 World Cup and scored 48 in their defeat to India in the final.
“I would like to announce that after careful consideration I have concluded that it is in the best long-term interests of the team that I step down now as national captain so that a new leader can be properly groomed for the 2015 World Cup in Australia”, a statement from Sangakkara said.
“This was a decision I made prior to the 2011 World Cup. I will be 37 by the next World Cup and I cannot therefore be sure of my place in the team. It is better that Sri Lanka is led now by a player who will be at the peak of their career during that tournament.
“It has been a true honour and a great privilege to serve my country as captain during the past two years and, although bitterly disappointed that we could not win the final, I am very proud of the performances of the team.
“I met with the selectors on Monday and I explained my reasons for my decision and I assured them of my fullest support in helping our new captain settle into the leadership.
“In this regard, I have offered to continue as the Test captain for the forthcoming series with England and possibly Australia if the selectors believe this would help the new captain and aid the transition.
“I have no plans of retirement from international cricket at this stage and subject to form and fitness I would like to be considered for selection in all three formats of the game for the foreseeable future. “