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An "imperfect" champion, Mahela Jayawardene's batting has always appeared lighter and less burdened, writes Osman Samiuddin in the National. The freedom he has shown in batting has also allowed him to transform his game in ODIs and helped him cultivate and aggressive style of captaincy, Samiuddin writes.
Take his hundred in the 2011 World Cup final, not because it proved or disproved his quality as a winning batsman, but because it was just an exquisite piece of work, to be appreciated for itself and isolated from something as piddling as a result.
He remains Sri Lanka's winningest Test captain, alongside Sanath Jayasuriya, but that is by the by. Sometimes, the results did not seem as important as what he did on the field, always compelling and, even in defeat, laudable.
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