Island Cricket

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Praise and apology for Sangakkara -

Praise and apology for Sangakkara - "HOBART, Australia -- Sri Lankan batsman Kumar Sangakkara received lavish praise from Australian captain Ricky Ponting and an apology from umpire Rudi Koertzen after his side's 96-run defeat in the second test at Hobart."

With the Sri Lankans chasing a formidable target of 507 for a win to square the two-test series, Sangakkara kept them afloat with a magnificent 192.

But, with his seventh test double hundred in sight, Sangakkara was given out caught by Ponting off Stuart Clark. Television replays suggested that the ball had in fact deflected off the batsman's shoulder.
Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene said Koertzen had apologized to Sangakkara for giving him out.

"Rudi came and said sorry to him. But that's it. Kumar being Kumar was fine with it," Jayawardene said.
"He was very disappointed at the particular moment but when you sit back after half an hour, you know it's a mistake made by a human and that's it."

Sangakkara went onto the field after the fall of the last wicket and put his arm around Koertzen's shoulder.

The 30-year-old right-handed Sangakkara's innings was the highest by a Sri lankan in Australia, surpassing Aravinda de Silva's 167 in Brisbane in 1989.

He faced 282 balls and hit 28 boundaries and a six in his 431-minute vigil at the crease.

Jayawardene said: "Kumar's innings was fantastic. One of the best I've seen. He batted the plan we had for him after he got his hundred yesterday, to bat through the day today while the other guys rotate around him so that we can challenge the 500-run total.

"Unfortunately, the other guys couldn't do it. But Kumar batted exceptionally well. The way he handled the situation was brilliant.

"I was very disappointed the way we got out. He's very upset about it, but that's how the game goes I guess."

Ponting, who led Australia to their 14th consecutive test win, was also full of praise for Sangakkara.

"He played beautifully today. I thought the way he struck the ball from about 120 onwards was some of the best hitting that you'll probably ever see with his back to the wall and running out of partners.

"It was a terrific knock. He's obviously been in great form lately. I read in the paper this morning that's six hundreds in his last 12 innings so he's in some good touch.

"He's a very, very good player, he's one of the best Test batsmen going around."

Sangakkara has now scored 5,741 runs in 68 Tests at an average of 55.73.
Sri Lanka's hopes dipped with the loss of three wickets for seven runs early in the day but they still reached 410.

Brett Lee gained the big breakthrough with the wicket of the experienced Sanath Jayasuriya 20 minutes into the day and his four for 87 gave him eight wickets for the match, 16 for the series, the man-of-the-match title and the player-of-the-series award.


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