February 28, 2014

A run-machine called Sangakkara

He has been in awesome form against Bangladesh lately, but a stiffer challenge awaits later this year
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Quiz question: have a look at this sequence of numbers and identify it - 142, 105, 139, 55, 75, 319, 105.

For anyone who has followed international cricket over the last 12 months, that's a pretty easy one - that's the sequence of scores that Kumar Sangakkara has racked up in Tests against Bangladesh since March 2013. Add up those numbers, and the total reads 940 runs from seven innings, at an average of 134.28, with five hundreds and two fifties. As if that wasn't enough, he also went ahead and plundered 247 ODI runs at a run a ball in four innings against them during this period. Bring in the Twenty20 international runs as well, and it all adds up to a pretty impressive 1235 runs for him from 13 international innings against Bangladesh since March 2013 - an average of 95 runs per innings, and 103 runs per month. The next best aggregate during this period is Dinesh Chandimal's 504.

All those runs have added healthy amounts to Sangakkara's overall international aggregate. In Tests, he has scored 1816 runs from 15 Tests against Bangladesh, 670 more than the second highest. (The top three, incidentally, are all from Sri Lanka, and they are also the only ones to score 1000-plus against Bangladesh in Tests.) In all international cricket, Sangakkara's tally against Bangladesh is 2983 from 50 innings, 1229 more than the next highest.

It's obviously a flaw of the cricketing calendar that Bangladesh tend to play some teams more than others. Among the top sides, Sri Lanka is the one team Bangladesh have played more than any other: they've played each other 16 times in Tests, and 56 times in all international matches; Bangladesh v Australia, on the other hand, has happened only four times in Tests, and 25 times in all international matches. Sri Lankan players have benefited, and Sangakkara more than most, for he has consistently converted his starts and scored centuries against them, as reflected in his stats from the last 12 months.

Sangakkara has also scored well when he has played Zimbabwe, though that hasn't happened as often - he has 536 runs from five Tests, at an average of 89.33. Overall 21% of his Test runs have been scored against these two teams. Sangakkara has obviously scored heavily against other teams too, but this percentage is unusually high when compared to batsmen from other teams. Graeme Smith, for example, has scored less than 10% of his runs against those two teams. Six of the of the top 12 run-getters against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe are from Sri Lanka, and most of them have scored a very high percentage of their total runs against them.

Top run-getters in Tests v B'desh and Zim since 2000
Batsman Tests Runs Average 100s/ 50s Tot runs* Percentage*
Kumar Sangakkara 20 2352 94.08 9/ 8 11,151 21.09
Sachin Tendulkar 13 1635 116.78 8/ 2 10,080 16.22
Mahela Jayawardene 18 1450 76.31 6/ 4 10,386 13.96
Rahul Dravid 15 1377 86.06 5/ 6 10,590 13.00
Shivnarine Chanderpaul 16 1020 60.00 4/ 2 8985 11.35
Tillakaratne Dilshan 13 1018 67.86 4/ 4 5283 19.27
Chris Gayle 14 933 49.10 3/ 3 6933 13.46
Younis Khan 10 929 77.41 3/ 3 7399 12.56
Graeme Smith 10 905 82.27 4/ 1 9257 9.78
Sanath Jayasuriya 10 878 79.81 3/ 3 4222 20.79
Thilan Samaraweera 13 854 71.16 2/ 7 5462 15.63
Marvan Atapattu 9 853 94.77 4/ 1 4055 21.03
* All runs scored since 2000 only

Unlike some of the other Sri Lankan batsmen, though, Sangakkara has gained respect and recognition from opposition bowlers across the world for his ability to play and score runs in different conditions. Splitting his career into three parts, it's clear that the last ten years have been phenomenally prolific - he has averaged 62 during this period, with plenty of runs at home against all opposition, and plenty of runs against Zimbabwe and Bangladesh. He hasn't had as much success in South Africa and England, but his record in Australia compares favourably with the best: six 50-plus scores in ten innings, and an average of 60.33.

However, Sri Lanka have always struggled to get enough Test matches outside the subcontinent, which spoils the chances for a batsman like Sangakkara to enhance his stature as a truly great, all-weather batsman. Over a career that has already stretched more than 13 years, he has played six Tests in Bangladesh, but only five in Australia.

Kumar Sangakkara's Test career
  Overall At home v B'desh & Zim In Aus, SA, Eng
Period Tests Average Tests Ave Tests Average Tests Average
Till Dec 2003 33 46.65 22 46.73 5 64.00 8 33.13
2004-2008 44 60.57 22 71.46 10 96.90 6 51.83
Jan 2009 onwards 45 63.31 23 69.97 5 111.00 8 34.40
Career 122 58.07 67 63.27 20 94.08 22 38.92

As mentioned earlier, Sangakkara has averaged 62 over the last ten years, which is incredible considering the period over which he has maintained those high standards. Excluding Bangladesh and Zimbabwe during this period, Sangakkara's average drops to a still-impressive 55.62, next only to Jacques Kallis and Shivnarine Chanderpaul.

Highest averages for batsmen since Jan 2004 (Qual: 5000 runs)
Batsman Tests Runs Average 100s/ 50s
Kumar Sangakkara 89 8865 61.99 31/ 32
Shivnarine Chanderpaul 83 6742 59.14 20/ 33
Jacques Kallis 93 8136 58.95 32/ 32
Younis Khan 61 5719 57.76 18/ 19
AB de Villiers 91 7111 52.28 19/ 35
Sachin Tendulkar 90 6957 51.91 20/ 32
Hashim Amla 75 6135 51.55 21/ 27
Michael Hussey 79 6235 51.52 19/ 29
Mahela Jayawardene 89 7442 50.97 23/ 27
Michael Clarke 104 8079 50.81 26/ 27

When talk of the greatest current batsmen crops up, Sangakkara is usually in the mix, along with a few others, prominent among them being AB de Villiers, Hashim Amla, Michael Clarke and Shivnarine Chanderpaul. All of them feature prominently in the table below, which lists the batsmen with the highest averages against all teams, with a 2500-run cut-off. Sangakkara is second in the list, next only to AB de Villiers, who has averaged 65.19 during this period.

Highest averages for Test batsmen since Jan 2009 (Qual: 2500 runs)
Batsman Tests Runs Average 100s/ 50s
AB de Villiers 43 3977 65.19 12/ 20
Kumar Sangakkara 45 4685 63.31 18/ 18
Hashim Amla 42 3932 60.49 15/ 16
Shivnarine Chanderpaul 39 3016 59.13 9/ 12
Jacques Kallis 39 3342 56.64 15/ 8
Younis Khan 31 2583 56.15 8/ 8
Thilan Samaraweera 35 2758 53.03 7/ 13
Michael Clarke 61 5195 52.47 17/ 15
Rahul Dravid 33 2779 52.43 10/ 10
Sachin Tendulkar 44 3492 52.11 10/ 17

Unlike Sangakkara, though, de Villiers hasn't played a whole lot against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, and hasn't done particularly well against them either. He has played only six Tests against them - all before 2009 - and scored 214 runs at an average of 35.67. That means his average in the last five years excluding Tests against these two teams remains 65.19, from 43 Tests, while Sangakkara's drops to 56.70, which is still outstanding. During these last five years, Sangakkara scored 999 runs from five Tests against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, again the highest by far. (In his case, all five Tests were against Bangladesh.)

Best Test batsmen since Jan 2009, excl. B'desh and Zim (Qual: 2000 runs)
Batsman Tests Runs Average 100s/ 50s
AB de Villiers 43 3977 65.19 12/ 20
Hashim Amla 42 3932 60.49 15/ 16
Kumar Sangakkara 40 3686 56.70 13/ 15
Jacques Kallis 39 3342 56.64 15/ 8
Thilan Samaraweera 34 2662 53.24 7/ 12
Michael Clarke 61 5195 52.47 17/ 15
Shivnarine Chanderpaul 33 2402 52.21 6/ 11

It's clear that Sangakkara and de Villiers are among the top batsmen going around today, but a break-up of the numbers indicate de Villiers has been more consistent so far in terms of stats in different countries. His career summary shows he averages more than 43 in every country where he has played at least three Tests; in Asia he averages 65.09, and he does better away than at home.

Sangakkara, though, has a few areas he'll want to improve on. In nine Tests in England, he averages 30.58; in eight matches in South Africa, he average 35.75. Surprisingly, he hasn't been prolific in India either, averaging 36.50 from ten Tests. (Click here for his complete career summary.)

An overall average of 38.92 in Australia, England and South Africa is respectable, but Sangakkara will want it to go beyond 40, or even 45, like some of the top batsmen from the subcontinent. Sachin Tendulkar averaged 51.64 in these three countries, Rahul Dravid 45.88.

In three previous tours to England, Sangakkara never managed to average 40 in a series - his highest was 38.50, in 2006. Now in the form of his life, the tour to England later this year presents an excellent opportunity for him to set the numbers right.

Subcontinent batsmen in Aus, Eng and SA
  Career Since 2009
Batsman Tests Average 100s/ 50s Tests Average 100s/ 50s
Sachin Tendulkar 52 51.64 15/ 18 11 44.30 2/ 4
Rahul Dravid 40 45.88 8/ 12 11 38.75 3/ 1
VVS Laxman 36 40.47 4/ 13 11 25.38 0/ 4
Virender Sehwag 25 35.97 4/ 7 9 21.27 0/ 3
Inzamam-ul-Haq 29 35.78 3/ 11 - - -
Mohammad Yousuf 22 38.37 4/ 6 5 27.70 0/ 2
Saeed Anwar 12 41.04 3/ 5 - - -
Younis Khan 16 40.60 2/ 6 3 30.67 1/ 0
Kumar Sangakkara 22 38.92 3/ 10 8 34.40 2/ 2
Mahela Jayawardene 25 31.25 3/ 5 9 22.27 0/ 2
Tillakaratne Dilshan 15 35.00 2/ 4 8 40.46 2/ 2
Thilan Samaraweera 14 30.92 2/ 3 9 41.33 2/ 2

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. Follow him on Twitter

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY on | March 5, 2014, 17:40 GMT

    When a bats man scores 300+ runs it doesn't matter if it was a 5 year old that bowled to him. To Score 300+ is an achievement. This is the same garbage people said when Sanath Jayasooriya scored the fastest 100 and 50 they claimed that the ground was too small. Yet when Sri Lanka was not a strong team all these so called experts scored big scores and took 10 wicket hauls and no one said it was against a week Sri Lankan side and disregard them. ICC didn't give test Status to Bangladesh because they felt the were week, but because they knew that Bangladesh passed their tried and tested screening system. The same system that Sri Lannka had to go through to win test status. So to now state that Bangladesh is a weaker team is like ICC questioning it's own screening system.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 5, 2014, 4:01 GMT

    It is not fair to assume S Rajesh is negating Sangakkara's record by not including NZ in the last Table. The reason he left NZ out is because of the very reason some of you think he should have included NZ: Sanga has a better record in NZ than in ENG/SA and when playing AUS in SL. Rajesh's point is to shore up two things: that Sanga is a Run Machine and that he needs to improve his stats in ENG/SA and at home against AUS. Any reasonable person must agree.

    As to ref that Bradman is not great cos he only played against ENG (a weak ENG according to some of you) - this is not correct either. Bradman was one of thousands who played the same ENG attack during the Bradman years. Bradman scored more cos Bradman SCORED MORE! Just as Sanga & Mahela both played 27 innings each against BNG & ZIM but Sanga scored 900 runs more. SO you compare how individual players did against a common opposition compared to other players. THAT is why it is impossible to ignore Sangakkara's record : )

  • POSTED BY cricaddict11 on | March 4, 2014, 18:41 GMT

    I like this commet

    " Posted by johnathonjosephs on (February 28, 2014, 17:24 GMT) Stormy16 has a good point. Amla and AB never had to face the 2 best bowlers of our generation: Steyn and Philander. I remember Sangakkara toured South Africa at a time when Philander was in that scary form and Steyn was also in deadly form. He scored an amazing 100 in the 2nd test that gave Sri Lanka their first win (Samaraweera also deserves a mention as he was good throughout the entire series). Also, it's ironic that when you take away Bangladesh/Zimbabwe stats, it hurts one player (Sangakkara) and benefits another player (AB). The England that Don Bradman played against (the ONLY opposition he played against) was not a very good team back in the day and Bradman averaged 99.9 against them... Should we discredit Bradman simply because England was a horrible team in the day?"

  • POSTED BY cricaddict11 on | March 4, 2014, 18:28 GMT

    @ Deepak260595 - Thank you for your thoughts. i thikn that you are a good Indian fan. But one thing should be said that Sanga's in AUS avg is better than Tendulkar and it is much higher around 62.

  • POSTED BY on | March 3, 2014, 15:50 GMT

    Why is New Zealand excluded in the analysis? Because Sanga has played brilliantly in New Zealand where all Indian batsman struggled?

  • POSTED BY on | March 3, 2014, 15:41 GMT

    Sangakkara can score runs on any pitch, against any type of bowler. The only regret is Sri Lanka do not get many tests in Aus and SA. But based on the limited chances he has got in SA,Aus,Eng and NZ Sanga has proven his class. Ponting described the 194 at Hobart as the best innings he has seen by an outsider in Australia. It is disappointing this article trying to disregard Sanga's greatness. Even taking runs against Ban and Zim, Sanga still averages above 50. And did any Indian watch the great match winning 100 against India? That is Class

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 3, 2014, 4:51 GMT

    Response to look-ma-i-am-indian: Ok, it's time to come to Daddy! What amusing analysis from you son! So leave Sanga out cos he didn't play Murali. Leave Ponting out cos he didn't play Warne. Leave Amla and AB out since they didn't play Steyn. Leave Tendulkar out since he didn't play Kumble. Lara doesn't count since he didn't play Ambrose or Walsh. What can I say? What can ANYONE say? Wisdom Of The Ages! Okay, now go write a book son.

  • POSTED BY YesSirYesSirThreebagsfull on | March 3, 2014, 4:08 GMT

    wrong to compare ordinary batsman sangakkara with the other greats. For instance muralitharan is the highest wicket taker in world. How many centuries has greats like kallis, Sachin, Viru, Rahul made against Murali? Sachin alone has made 9, Viru also made 200's. But how many 100's have sangakkara made against murali? NONE.

  • POSTED BY LakmalPhysics on | March 3, 2014, 3:50 GMT

    How Rajesh omit New Zealand from his analysis? Sanga has a beeter record in New Zealand.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 2, 2014, 18:08 GMT

    Response to pull_shot: You miscued the pull! The only way Sachin compared better to Sanga is when you consider SA/ENG alone or Sanga's HOME records against Aussies. Cos he has a better record than Sachin IN Australia. THIS is what the last table in this article and a lot of other such articles show. But that is TOO REAL for those used to fantasies to deal with. Truth hurts those who oppose it while it is liberating to those who seek it. Why? Cos for those who seek truth only the TRUTH MATTERS.

  • POSTED BY on | March 5, 2014, 17:40 GMT

    When a bats man scores 300+ runs it doesn't matter if it was a 5 year old that bowled to him. To Score 300+ is an achievement. This is the same garbage people said when Sanath Jayasooriya scored the fastest 100 and 50 they claimed that the ground was too small. Yet when Sri Lanka was not a strong team all these so called experts scored big scores and took 10 wicket hauls and no one said it was against a week Sri Lankan side and disregard them. ICC didn't give test Status to Bangladesh because they felt the were week, but because they knew that Bangladesh passed their tried and tested screening system. The same system that Sri Lannka had to go through to win test status. So to now state that Bangladesh is a weaker team is like ICC questioning it's own screening system.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 5, 2014, 4:01 GMT

    It is not fair to assume S Rajesh is negating Sangakkara's record by not including NZ in the last Table. The reason he left NZ out is because of the very reason some of you think he should have included NZ: Sanga has a better record in NZ than in ENG/SA and when playing AUS in SL. Rajesh's point is to shore up two things: that Sanga is a Run Machine and that he needs to improve his stats in ENG/SA and at home against AUS. Any reasonable person must agree.

    As to ref that Bradman is not great cos he only played against ENG (a weak ENG according to some of you) - this is not correct either. Bradman was one of thousands who played the same ENG attack during the Bradman years. Bradman scored more cos Bradman SCORED MORE! Just as Sanga & Mahela both played 27 innings each against BNG & ZIM but Sanga scored 900 runs more. SO you compare how individual players did against a common opposition compared to other players. THAT is why it is impossible to ignore Sangakkara's record : )

  • POSTED BY cricaddict11 on | March 4, 2014, 18:41 GMT

    I like this commet

    " Posted by johnathonjosephs on (February 28, 2014, 17:24 GMT) Stormy16 has a good point. Amla and AB never had to face the 2 best bowlers of our generation: Steyn and Philander. I remember Sangakkara toured South Africa at a time when Philander was in that scary form and Steyn was also in deadly form. He scored an amazing 100 in the 2nd test that gave Sri Lanka their first win (Samaraweera also deserves a mention as he was good throughout the entire series). Also, it's ironic that when you take away Bangladesh/Zimbabwe stats, it hurts one player (Sangakkara) and benefits another player (AB). The England that Don Bradman played against (the ONLY opposition he played against) was not a very good team back in the day and Bradman averaged 99.9 against them... Should we discredit Bradman simply because England was a horrible team in the day?"

  • POSTED BY cricaddict11 on | March 4, 2014, 18:28 GMT

    @ Deepak260595 - Thank you for your thoughts. i thikn that you are a good Indian fan. But one thing should be said that Sanga's in AUS avg is better than Tendulkar and it is much higher around 62.

  • POSTED BY on | March 3, 2014, 15:50 GMT

    Why is New Zealand excluded in the analysis? Because Sanga has played brilliantly in New Zealand where all Indian batsman struggled?

  • POSTED BY on | March 3, 2014, 15:41 GMT

    Sangakkara can score runs on any pitch, against any type of bowler. The only regret is Sri Lanka do not get many tests in Aus and SA. But based on the limited chances he has got in SA,Aus,Eng and NZ Sanga has proven his class. Ponting described the 194 at Hobart as the best innings he has seen by an outsider in Australia. It is disappointing this article trying to disregard Sanga's greatness. Even taking runs against Ban and Zim, Sanga still averages above 50. And did any Indian watch the great match winning 100 against India? That is Class

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 3, 2014, 4:51 GMT

    Response to look-ma-i-am-indian: Ok, it's time to come to Daddy! What amusing analysis from you son! So leave Sanga out cos he didn't play Murali. Leave Ponting out cos he didn't play Warne. Leave Amla and AB out since they didn't play Steyn. Leave Tendulkar out since he didn't play Kumble. Lara doesn't count since he didn't play Ambrose or Walsh. What can I say? What can ANYONE say? Wisdom Of The Ages! Okay, now go write a book son.

  • POSTED BY YesSirYesSirThreebagsfull on | March 3, 2014, 4:08 GMT

    wrong to compare ordinary batsman sangakkara with the other greats. For instance muralitharan is the highest wicket taker in world. How many centuries has greats like kallis, Sachin, Viru, Rahul made against Murali? Sachin alone has made 9, Viru also made 200's. But how many 100's have sangakkara made against murali? NONE.

  • POSTED BY LakmalPhysics on | March 3, 2014, 3:50 GMT

    How Rajesh omit New Zealand from his analysis? Sanga has a beeter record in New Zealand.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 2, 2014, 18:08 GMT

    Response to pull_shot: You miscued the pull! The only way Sachin compared better to Sanga is when you consider SA/ENG alone or Sanga's HOME records against Aussies. Cos he has a better record than Sachin IN Australia. THIS is what the last table in this article and a lot of other such articles show. But that is TOO REAL for those used to fantasies to deal with. Truth hurts those who oppose it while it is liberating to those who seek it. Why? Cos for those who seek truth only the TRUTH MATTERS.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 2, 2014, 18:00 GMT

    Response to RoyRulez: The PACE QUARTET of WIndies from 1979-83 (which included four at a time of Roberts, Holding, Croft, Garner, Clarke, or Marshall) had their best unbeaten run for 27 Tests with 17 wins. Compare that to Aussie Quartet's unbeaten run of 22 Tests with 20 wins from 2005-08 (McGrath, Lee, Clarke, Gillespie, Warne, MacGill). SA enjoyed their best unbeaten run 2012-13 winning 10 of 15 Tests (Steyn, Morkel, Philander, Kallis). England's best unbeaten run was 1968-71 for 9 wins in 26 Tests. Their collective records during these periods - as well as their individual records overall - PROVES there wasn't much difference in their strike rates + runs per inning + economy rate - except for few extra bruises to those who faced the WIndies PACE Quartet.

    Therefore, Viv not facing WIndies pace is MOOT! There are too many "statisticians" + readers with views that are NOT based on facts but blinded by what they FEEL or what OTHERS have said or are based on their BIAS. TRUTH just IS.

  • POSTED BY RoyRulez on | March 2, 2014, 12:40 GMT

    @johnathonjosephs and @stormy16... You guys are speaking like Viv Richards critics... who used to say "he never had to face the West Indian pacers"!!!

    It is common sense, no player has had to face his teammates in International cricket!!! Sanga hasn't had to face Murali just lyk AB and Amla doesn't hav to face Steyn!!!

    PS: I maintain... Sanga is a modern day great but some of the comments here are just ridiculous!!!

  • POSTED BY Lord.emsworth on | March 2, 2014, 11:57 GMT

    Zaheer Mohamed you are an armchair bully quick to destroy Sangakarras reputation with your poison pen. Read Mr.Rajesh's comments suggesting Sangakarra and Sri lanka have not been allocated that many tests outside the sub continent. Sangakarra bats against the opposition he is provided with and when he bats against teams like Australia in Australia he scored 192 in 2007 given wrongfully out by Rudi Koertzen, who later apologized for his mistake. He averages six 50-plus scores in ten innings, and an average of 60.33. against Australia. Yes, he has a mediocre average against England and India but nobody's perfect...

  • POSTED BY on | March 2, 2014, 8:31 GMT

    According to viewers why on earth sangas records against Ban And Zim should be omitted.what should he do if the ICC doesnt give more chances to play against Aus,Eng and SA,even Sachin has played so many matches against Ban and Zim,he has 8 centuries against them and average is 116 ..Sangas average since 2009 is almost 63.5 and sachins average is 52,,see the gap,,no words,,no arguements ,Sanga and Ab are the best in cricket now

  • POSTED BY pull_shot on | March 2, 2014, 6:20 GMT

    @Chrishan Brother u talk about sachin just check he has 2 in aus,1 in eng,1 in saf before turning 20 that's calibre of sachin and he got 100 in perth at 18 years old that too first match there and coming to ur point sachin has too play 30 tast across 22 carrier were at times out of form over all this period so considering that it's disadvantage to sachin

  • POSTED BY pull_shot on | March 2, 2014, 6:15 GMT

    look at sachin a good 10 average above all Sub continent batsman and i can tell u that dropped from 2011 and dravid too 5 more than next best younis khan, also sehwag 36 is good considering he is opener it is like 42 to say if ur middle order

  • POSTED BY on | March 1, 2014, 19:00 GMT

    No wonder he is the best batsman in current era,,,,,,,,,,

  • POSTED BY android_user on | March 1, 2014, 18:04 GMT

    S Rajesh I think in a nutshell you could have just said Sangakkara had scored 23000 international runs. 8000 Vs Bangladesh 8000 Vs Zimbabwe and the rest of 7000 against other teams in Home conditions. Therefore apparently he has scored no runs and he is not even a batsman. This reminds me an old village story, one innocent farmer brings 10kg of tamarind to sell at the market he meets a metchant and the merchant finalizes the deas as follows. 5kg deduction for moisture 3kg deduction for the continer and 2kg deduction for the tamarind shell. So in fact the farmer didn't bring any Tamarind to the market. Thank you

  • POSTED BY on | March 1, 2014, 16:08 GMT

    if icc give sri lanka to enough test matches like india ,England ,Australia ,sanga will make a unbreakable records in test cricket icc is fear to give that chance to sri lanka

  • POSTED BY Deepak260595 on | March 1, 2014, 14:16 GMT

    Undoubtedly one of the best modern day greats. Probably the most affluent and technically sound player around. His stats are no lesser than tendulkar, if not greater. Kumar's strength is his tremendous adaptability to situations. He is one of the few players who can adapt to any kind of situation, an area where i feel he scores above tendulkar. However his record in aus, sa, eng are not tendulkarisque,a reason probably why tendulkar might still be considered greater. But still one cant deny the fact that kumar's tremendous contributions have helped sl win more often than not. #respect from india

  • POSTED BY wapuser on | March 1, 2014, 10:10 GMT

    Sangakkara recently started a new era of his cricketing life .unlike so called all time great Sachin, Ponting, sanga getting better every day, in every match.I just hope he will get enough time and enough matches to get that narrow line wider. Mature ,strong, brave, intelligent, smart, honest, strict, I never seen eny batsmen with all those Qualities other than sanga.

  • POSTED BY on | March 1, 2014, 5:19 GMT

    He is the Best, but i can not understand why Indian fans are so jealous. No other classic,better, batsman in the world Today.

  • POSTED BY SL_legacy on | March 1, 2014, 4:44 GMT

    @ODI_BestFormOfCricke.. you call Sanga and Ponting mediocre... check out the stats again and first of all wake up form ... LOL

  • POSTED BY Welikada_Wombats on | March 1, 2014, 3:36 GMT

    How about comparing apples to apples and not apples to oranges? Comparing Sanga's overall stats to that of specialist batsmen is quite ridiculous especially given that Sanga also batted mainly at no3 when he was keeping. Excluding Bangla and Zim, as a specialist batsman Sanga averages over 60. In contrast he averaged around 40 as a wk/bat. So clearly keeping hampered his batting. Against the top 7 as a specialist batsman, at home he averages 68, away 55, in the SC 65 and outside of the SC 53. As those numbers show yes he can be termed a SC bully but he didn't do too bad outside of the SC either. For example as a specialist bat he has scored a century every 6.6 innings outside of the SC (excl Zim). In comparison Sachin has done so every 7 innings and Dravid every 9 innings. He's not in the same league as Lara, Sachin and Ponting (as he himself has stated many times) but imo as far as modern-day greats go he's right up there with Kallis and Dravid.

  • POSTED BY Emancipator007 on | March 1, 2014, 3:02 GMT

    @Cricinfo: Just VERIFIED and concur with some of the below posters. Ganguly has an admirable average of 44.10 in 28 Tests in SA,Eng,OZ with almost as many combined 50 plus scores as Dravid- 19!Shows how perceptions can color people's biases against quality players with good overseas records. Please INCLUDE Ganguly's records in last TABLE as these STATS-based columns remain PERMANENT keeper of records for fans to note and judge players' all-round quality.

    Many of the carping fans don't realize that SL barely gets 2-3 Tests in these countries resulting in less adaptable time. Aravinda one of the greatest bats EVER also suffered same issue of 2 Tests series despite which he showcased class in OZ/NZ tours in late 80s.Sanga is a BONAFIDE great- his superb game and foundation showcases that.

  • POSTED BY rsk123 on | March 1, 2014, 1:58 GMT

    I don't know why many people are bashing the author. He didn't tell anything wrong about Sanga. He is just telling that Sanga should improve in Eng,Aus & SA. Sanga's fan, you too are no different from Us. Putting blame on ECB, practice matches and even Eng winter for Sanga's performance...lol @Chrishan ...Sachin Avg 51.44 in his first 23 Tests Aus,SA & Eng (combined) Dravid Avg 57.28 in his first 21 Tests Aus,SA & Eng (combined)

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | March 1, 2014, 1:43 GMT

    Response to YadavAjay: Sanga has played 67 Tests in SL out of 122 to Sachin's 94 in 200. Sachin has played 16 Tests against BNG/ZIM compared to Sanga's 20 with Sachin averaging 136 against the minnows compared to Sanga's 95. I find it hilarious that you should find the LAST TABLE in this article to say ALL THERE IS TO SAY when it only considers only 3 out of 9 Test playing nations - but of course the ONLY three that Sachin does better than Sanga. Oh, wait! That is not true either. Sanga has a better record in Australia than Sachin. Hmmmm... SO out of 8 opposing Test playing nations if you consider only TWO (ENG/SA) ALONE is Tendulkar better than Sanga. I can see why that makes you happy!

  • POSTED BY marlboro19 on | March 1, 2014, 1:42 GMT

    SL definition of great- A batsman who averages in thirties in Aus, Eng, and SA and makes bulk of his runs against BD. But at least cricket has given SL some popularity in the cricket playing world. In rest of world, SL is recognized as a neighbour of Ind, and that's it.

  • POSTED BY caldruid on | March 1, 2014, 0:49 GMT

    SL fans relax. I dont think Rajesh has any malicious intent. He is a statistician. So he has to talk averages. Everyone knows Sangakkara is a very good player. SL board needs to reduce Asian matches in their itinerary and make the team play more overseas. It's good for the entire side ( else you will end up like India ) and helps the batsmen, like Sangakkara, score more and be respected more.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | February 28, 2014, 22:31 GMT

    stormy16: well said on averages. But for most folks that doesn't count since that makes Sangakkara quite insurmoutable. Hence their wish to remove anything and everything that sheds Sanga in a better light and settle on cherry picking stats to suit their fantasies than accept reality. I thought this was a good article overall except for a couple of illogical opinions by author but, then, the opinions of readers is another thing! Quite stupid, for example, when they LOVE the last table cos Sachin looks better on it and thinks that table SAYS IT ALL. No it doesn't. That only takes 25% of Sachin best while the article DISCOUNT 20% of Sanga's record cos he played them against BNG/ZIM,

  • POSTED BY neo-galactico on | February 28, 2014, 21:49 GMT

    Without taking anything away from Sangakkara these numbers show why although he's been a superlative form I still can't place him and Mahela as all time greats. Yes they're Sri Lankan greats but all time greats they're not. It's not their fault to play their cricket in more batsman friendly pitches but their numbers in more bowler friendly pitches aren't as great.

  • POSTED BY doesitmatter on | February 28, 2014, 21:22 GMT

    continuing from my previous post..

    Good indicator of his flat trackness is the "Since 2009" column in alien conditions..he averages less than Thilan and Dilshan..He is supposed to be at his peak now..Like i said you can all crib all u want..

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 20:49 GMT

    Sanga has the Avg against OZ 43+,NZ 48+,SA 48+(Over All),OZ 60+,NZ 66+,SA 35+ENG 30+,WI 34+(in away),OZ/NZ 62+,AFR 47+,EUR 30+,AMR 34+(Away)-See that figures shows the consistency of his bating records. WI/ENG/SA time of the tours which held should have taken to consider will give you an better idea. Even the so call greats have not consistent through out there carrier if you can analyse & see.

  • POSTED BY ygkd on | February 28, 2014, 20:27 GMT

    @ MAW71 - I always suspected that tour timing had something to do with Sangakkara's average on English soil. The lesser nations usually get less favourable time slots from the ECB and CA due to a lack of commercial clout.

  • POSTED BY EnjY_Cricket_not_averages on | February 28, 2014, 18:54 GMT

    Mr.Rajesh, Very clever article. I think you have achieved your main objective by satisfying the majority audience in Cricinfo; average obsessed average Indian "cricket" fans. I suggest you spend less time on comparing and contrasting non- Indian cricketers to such extent, Instead just write good about Tendulkar(the match winner) and about his batting averages or any other Indian cricketer. There is a 1 billion sport fan base which you can reach in to. These Indian sports fans have nothing but cricket to support- the one and only game their country men perform in a world stage.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 18:16 GMT

    Can you look at the 100 today against you India under so much pressure. Give him the respect he deserve, will you?

  • POSTED BY pradeep_dealwis on | February 28, 2014, 17:40 GMT

    Also consider that Sanga has a great record in NZ and most those runs were scored in 2005/06 against Bond et al, a much better bowling attack than what England has now.

  • POSTED BY MAW71 on | February 28, 2014, 17:26 GMT

    Dear Mr. S. Rajesh, do you know that there is a reason for Sangakkara not performing well in England? Do you know that ECB always schedule matches with Sri Lanka in either May or June when the weather is cold and damp. Let ECB offer Sri Lanka a window in July or August and see how he performs. Indian have performed in England better than Sanga because they always get to play in better conditions in the summer. Indian would have flopped playing in May or June.

  • POSTED BY crzcric on | February 28, 2014, 17:25 GMT

    Good Analysis.But India always get 3 test matches along with 2 practice matches.SL only get 2 test match series in away test and may be one practice matches.So how can you expect them to get use to conditions.and also SL rarely tour SA,ENG and AUS. look at the gaps between those tours.That tells you the story. I wonder what SANGA do if SL get chances like INDIA. I never seen a comparison of touring stats

  • POSTED BY johnathonjosephs on | February 28, 2014, 17:24 GMT

    Stormy16 has a good point. Amla and AB never had to face the 2 best bowlers of our generation: Steyn and Philander. I remember Sangakkara toured South Africa at a time when Philander was in that scary form and Steyn was also in deadly form. He scored an amazing 100 in the 2nd test that gave Sri Lanka their first win (Samaraweera also deserves a mention as he was good throughout the entire series). Also, it's ironic that when you take away Bangladesh/Zimbabwe stats, it hurts one player (Sangakkara) and benefits another player (AB). The England that Don Bradman played against (the ONLY opposition he played against) was not a very good team back in the day and Bradman averaged 99.9 against them... Should we discredit Bradman simply because England was a horrible team in the day?

  • POSTED BY ODI_BestFormOfCricket on | February 28, 2014, 17:19 GMT

    for sub-continent batsmed to be called great, batsman should have performed well in SA, OZ, ENG and NZ. Like this, batsman from SA, ENG, NZ, OZ should perform well in IND,PAK and SL to have a place in greats list. Sanga failed to perform in green tops. This is why i dont like to compare POINTING with SAHIN and LARA, bcz PUNTER averages 26 against india in india. Both are mediocre batsmen.

  • POSTED BY RoyRulez on | February 28, 2014, 17:04 GMT

    Another post to praise some batsman ending up as a proof of AB's dominance!!!

    On the comment... no doubt that Sanga is among the best batsmen of this generation but some of the comments from SL fans are so ridiculous!!!

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 16:45 GMT

    I hope Mr.Rajesh's questions have been answered after today's game with India.. that is a man on top of his game.. and why would anybody spend time arguing over AB vs Sanga? Both are absolutely brilliant cricketers so just let them play on, eh?

  • POSTED BY SaleemHatoum on | February 28, 2014, 16:35 GMT

    He is a truly a legend. In my books a batsman who scores a lot of runs with double and triple centuries is truly a great batsman. Sachin Tendulkar is agreat batsman but he has never scored a triple century either in fist class, test, or even in class-A.

  • POSTED BY SeamingWicket on | February 28, 2014, 16:00 GMT

    The semantics over how good a batsman is, once again! Sanga on stats is an all time great Though he ranks Lara much higher than himself Admitting that Lara was able to play innings in test matches that he could not

  • POSTED BY B.C.G on | February 28, 2014, 13:01 GMT

    @ Ruchira Bandara-BIG WORDS there.ABD>>>>Sanga(bangla basher)Do you know when ABD comes at no 5 to bat vs Bangladesh,his team are usually 500+.Hence poor AB can't bully Ban & is forced to hit out before the declaration.Secondly there are many batsmen from Eng,Saf,Aus who have done brilliantly in Asia.Have you forgotten how Hussey smashed your pathetic team all over Lanka.ABD,Amla,Chanders,Cook,Kallis they all have been superb in Asia.

  • POSTED BY 2929paul on | February 28, 2014, 12:45 GMT

    Interesting to see that there are no England players here, not even the supposedly great Kevin Pietersen, who England can't do without, according to some.

  • POSTED BY MrGarreth on | February 28, 2014, 12:44 GMT

    For all those saying AB's average against Bangladesh is an indication that Sanga is a better player think again. AB before 2009 wasn't anywhere near the player he started to become since then. His overall average was barely over 40 against any side when he started the 2008/09 series of Australia. From that point onwards, as the numbers show (astounded that people question it even with the numbers (ie proof) in front of them!) AB has been a dominant force. To say that AB would fail against Bangladesh and that is your justification for Sanga being a better batsman is pathetic. I love Sanga and he very well might be up there but don not use such lazy arguments. You're just trying to find a chink in AB's chain which is becoming increasingly difficult to do. Yeah... AB has dominated Ajmal but wont be able to dominate Bangladesh spinners? Also, Amla; triple in England, Double in India, 196 in Aus etc.; is likely just as strong.

  • POSTED BY stormy16 on | February 28, 2014, 12:27 GMT

    I get the feeling this is yet another attempt to discredit what is nothing short of a sensational batter. Is Bang and Zim test nations or not? If they are what is going on above with this never ending analysis with & withouth Bang/Zim? For example AB scores alot of runs but he doesnt have to face Steyn and Vern - should we find another measure for that? Eng were marginally better than Bangladesh in the 1990's so should be take out the runs Waugh and wickets Warne got against Eng in that period and re-look at their records. ponting never had to face Mcgrath and Warne, Bradman only played against Eng and hopefully that Eng side was better than the 90's - the disection of numbers to discredit a great could go on forever, which is why man has already discovered - wait for it - THE AVERAGE!!

  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 28, 2014, 12:17 GMT

    garry sobers boosted his average against India who were minnows in 1950s n 1960s. ponting against WI who became minnows in early 2000s. every player does that. sanga is a modern legend. cheers from India.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 12:07 GMT

    The last table says it all! You've got to perform in Aus SA and Eng to be called one of the greatest!

  • POSTED BY Pardnerday on | February 28, 2014, 11:48 GMT

    To settle argument of players who feast on so-called minnows, in addition to their averages, make a link where we can see their averages against each international side and how batsmen have done against quality bowling and maybe against individual bowlers. But I fear that would be too much of an effort. The argument is somewhat valid but remember that ICC deems them as Test Nations so it is what it is. True, some batsmen have padded their stats against some weak opposition. I do not think this takes anything away from Sangakkara. He is a fine batsman (should be in anyone's book) and would be in any era. He would have done well against almost any pace battery. He has played with the cards he has been dealt. It is not his fault. But one cannot help but wonder how batsmen such as Sobers, Richards, Milburn, Barrington, and many others would have done against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. Stanley A George III Chief Agent Unique Sports Agency Brooklyn, NY UniqueSports@hahoo.com (917) 514-9972

  • POSTED BY shane-oh on | February 28, 2014, 10:00 GMT

    @stevenz - that's not a logical suggestion. Where would be draw the line? Re-evaluate every few years which scores do and don't count? Perhaps eliminate any scores at home against India? A test match is a test match.

  • POSTED BY stevenz on | February 28, 2014, 9:34 GMT

    I really think that all scores against Bangladesh should not be included in calculating career averages It distorts averages and makes it hard to compare like against like. There is no doubt that Sanga's test average has been 'blown out' by these recent innings against Bangladesh. No one is helped by this run of scores, least of all Sanga as it only casts aspersions on his test average, which is unfair as I think he is a very good batsman.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 8:55 GMT

    It baffles me that sourav ganguly has been ignored in this article. Has scored over 2000 in 28 tests in eng aus sa. Averaging over 42.

  • POSTED BY Khsaiful on | February 28, 2014, 8:42 GMT

    @Mr Rajesh, its clear that many Indians are jealous with the exclusive performance of Kumar Sangakara, also many Indians are worried that Sanga may surpass Sachin Tendulkar. Can you please write another article about the performance of Indian player outside India? Also how much runs are scored by Indian players against Zimbabwe only? I thank team Srilanka for at least they play for cricket, they are helping Bangladesh and other weaker teams in promoting cricket, but India only play for money. They do not help Bangladesh and do not play much cricket against Bangladesh due to fear. That India only play for money can be easily realized in view of recent revamp in ICC. I would request you not to defame any cricketer's achievement and so for any cricketing nation like Bangladesh, AFG or Ire.

  • POSTED BY ygkd on | February 28, 2014, 8:02 GMT

    I remember when SL were just starting out in serious international cricket - the prevalent train of thought down under was one of "why do we have to bother playing them?" It shows how little things have changed that we still hear it today and is part of the reason why Oz bats don't exactly prosper under Asian conditions. Australians don't give such conditions the respect they deserve, or the batsmen that can master them. They're always second class. Like Murali, somehow. A similar thing happened in the Big Bash. I remember a commentator labouring a point over exactly who Shakib was, upon Shakib's debuting for the Strikers. Not sure if the commentator was pretending he didn't know, but obviously the audience was not expected to have a clue. Best all-rounder in world cricket might have done as a summation I would have thought, but then what do I know?

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 8:00 GMT

    Why are the subcontinent batsmen always judged based on their performances in SA ENG and AUS and the batsmen form those countries not judged based on their performances in Asia? Mastering the art of batsmen-ship on the turning pitches in Asia is a huge achievement! something that some of the batsmen from the AUS SA and ENG haven't been able to do an yet they are spoken off as greats! this is indeed baffling! a turning dustbowl is not suitable for test cricket but a green-top on which 20 wickets fall on a day is not complained on? And to the writer please understand you can only score against who you play against! Even if you are playing against Bangladesh it is not an easy task to come up with such performances! Talking about AB it is stated that he averaged 35 against Bangladesh and if scoring Bangla is nothing and the runs that Sanga has made them is put down and all that how can AB be such a great batsmen if he can't even score heavily against the so called useless bangla bowling?

  • POSTED BY shane-oh on | February 28, 2014, 7:48 GMT

    Kumar Sangakkara is one of the greatest batsmen ever. No amount of lame attempts to denigrate his achievements will change that fact. It's astonishing to see people arguing otherwise, they must have some sort of vested interest because nobody is that stupid.

    Interesting to note that being willing to play against test playing nations that other countries (read England/Australia/India) choose to ignore is now being presented as a bad thing.

  • POSTED BY Sepathie on | February 28, 2014, 7:26 GMT

    To Redneck Between 1995- 2001 english side is very weak. Your shane did take lots of wickets with them during that time. please consider them before making these hatred remarks of Sri Lankan great. You can divide and subdivide the statistics until you find something to disregard him. But He will be the greatest bowler ever to walk on this planet. ( Anyway do you know Bradman never had a Century outside Australia or England cricket grounds?)

  • POSTED BY Chrishan on | February 28, 2014, 7:19 GMT

    An excellent article. However, it is quite clear that SL doesn't play nearly enough Tests with Aus, Sa and Eng and I therefore think it is unfair to compare Sangakkara with Sachin and Dravid who have played 30 and 18 Tests more respectively. What were Sachin's and Dravid's averages after their first 22 Tests with these three nations combined? Playing a further 20 Tests and at your peak can easily rectify these numbers, however it's tough when SL doesn't get many big tours. Rajesh perhpas you can provide these numbers.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 6:51 GMT

    what can you say by just eight mathces in Aus Eng SA? at the same time Sachin has played most matches in good batting pitches in India.

  • POSTED BY Cricthink on | February 28, 2014, 6:48 GMT

    You can score or get wickets only with those who you play against. If Australia, England and South Africa do not play Sri lanka, whom do you blame. ICC not Sanga or Mahela. With the recent changes in ICC governance this will get worse not better. The regulatory body should determine who plays whom. This is where in most individual sports , you compete against yourself and that has far better net result than a team sport. Brian C Lara set many batting records which I suppose will stand the test of time. However, he was part of test teams which had maximum losses. You can counter argue, if he was part of a great batting line up he never would have had the opportunity to get those records. Similarly Murali would have never bowled so many deliveries if there was support from the other end, you can counter argue by saying, he was always under pressure to perform. Therefore I say it again ONE CAN ONLY PERFORM AGAINST AN OPPONENT WHO IS PRESENT. Sanga Also kept wickets, thats more to it

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 6:43 GMT

    http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/stats/index.html?class=1;filter=advanced;home_or_away=2;keeper=0;opposition=1;opposition=2; opposition=3;orderby=batting_average;qualmin1=1000;qualval1= runs;spanmin1=15+Mar+2000;spanval1=span;team=6;team=7; team=8;template=results;type=batting

    Sanga as a batsman only sits in third place with a average of 47. xx

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 6:42 GMT

    The way you are looking at this is wrong. It is not his fault that he had to play more matches with the weaker sides. But what matters is he has thrashed them whenever he got the chance. Also, all the Indian players that are in that list has pretty much played twice as much as matches than Mahela and Sanga. Anyway it sad that everyone just like the last table just because Sachin is on top. But hey hes not here anymore so enjoy some classy cricket while sanga is still playing.

  • POSTED BY nothingnew on | February 28, 2014, 6:38 GMT

    @redneck you are wrong man . murali is the best . warne was good . but murali is best . murali take 17 wickets against england . more than 10 wickets in game against south africa , Australia and everytime that he played . but what about warne .

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 6:35 GMT

    batting greatness is not just on comparing averages, sir viv richard's avg is 50 but he was better batsman than many others, those who have an avg over his avg. look at the quality of inning one produces for his team, against best or very good bowlers of his era.since 2001, at test level i think AMLA has produced some very very special innings more often than others, kevin peterson at number 2 and ab deviliar at number 3, clark at number 4. there are manys who played one or two very very special innings but not consistant enough to be compared with amla, kp, ab, and clark , eg macullam's match saving triple century against india recently. but AMLA's 311* against no1 team eng in eng against anderson and swan, 196 against aus in aus, 253 against ind in ind, deviliar's 114* against aus in aus, 278* against pak in pak, 217* against ind in ind, 174 against eng in eng are very very very special innings which can not be compared even by great sanga,great sachin,great kallis.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 6:32 GMT

    Subcontinent batsmen in Aus, Eng and SA since 2009 check this out Mr. Rajesh

    http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/stats/index.html?class=1;filter=advanced;home_or_away=2;keeper=0;opposition=1; opposition=2;opposition=3;orderby=batting_average;qualmin1=500;qualval1= runs;spanmax1=28+Feb+2014;spanmin1=28+Feb+2009; spanval1=span;team=6;team=7;team=8;template=results;type=batting

    Kholi is the best around that time

  • POSTED BY crzcric on | February 28, 2014, 6:29 GMT

    Good Analysis.But India always get 3 test matches along with 2 practice matches.SL only get 2 test match series in away test and may be one practice matches.So how can you expect them to get use to conditions.and also SL rarely tour SA,ENG and AUS. look at the gaps between those tours.That tells you the story. I wonder what SANGA do if SL get chances like INDIA. I never seen a comparison of touring stats

  • POSTED BY DarthKetan on | February 28, 2014, 6:21 GMT

    @Kasunliya9 - The point about not getting enough matches is fair, but why bring in Sachin/Dravid for comparison? You'll find they performed well enough there in early part of their careers, and similarly whether in 1st/2nd matches or in 3rd/4th...

  • POSTED BY cricketsubh on | February 28, 2014, 6:16 GMT

    SANGAKARA make only 6 centuries out of sub continent out of 35 so he makes 29 centuries in subcontinent

  • POSTED BY cricketsubh on | February 28, 2014, 6:12 GMT

    Sangas record in aus,eng,sa is not gud so i think he should consider as a VERY GUD class player not a great player like tendulker ,lara .pointing,kalis ,drivid,

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 5:52 GMT

    Obviously Sanga knows his record is not a world beating in Eng, that's why he opt out from IPL to get more practice and play the next England tour. As far as I know he will try his best to score as much as he can from this England tour as this is also his last. You know what Mr. Rajesh he will be on the top three of your list of "Subcontinent batsmen in Aus, Eng and SA" when he's done with England this summer.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 5:40 GMT

    Last table says who is the best player in the world

  • POSTED BY redneck on | February 28, 2014, 5:33 GMT

    gotta love bangledesh and zimbabwe inflaiting batting avgs and deflaiting bowling avgs since 2000 and 1994 respectivly! murali gaining the most out of any cricketer. with out his zimbabwe and bangledesh wickets he wouldnt be leading wicket taker in tests where as warne took real test wickets against real test nations!!! @ygkd mate that was a 3 test tour of australia last year sri lanka had, and for the record sri lanka have played 7 tests in australia through out sangakaras career. he didnt play in the tests in darwin and cairns in 2004. sri lanka might get more tests if they could compete with aus but they can barely do that in the own conditions against the weakest aussie side in years yet alone when they tour australia. nothing against sangakara, he and mathews are the only batsman from sri lanka i would back outside of asian conditions to do well!

  • POSTED BY YadavAjay on | February 28, 2014, 5:09 GMT

    No disrespect intended but the last table says it all loud and clear to all Sanga and Jaya fans. One should not be bothered about career averages especially when it's the Srilankans because they only (mostly) play in Srilianka or Bangladesh.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | February 28, 2014, 5:04 GMT

    (Note to Author S Rajesh) This is a more acceptable/reasonable analysis for me than most I've seen for following reason: there is a genuine approach to determine where Sanga stands against current crop culminating in an EXACTING analysis of what he needs to do. Impressive! Worth the time spent reading your article twice over.

    One observation on an opinion you caste: you said Smith scored less overall against Bangladesh compared to Sangha but once you remove BNG & ZIM from their records you see Smith has 8352 runs to Sanga's 8799. Also, if AB hasn't done that well in the few games he'd played against BNG, why does it HAVE TO MEAN he would have done BETTER if he played more. Maybe he would do just as bad or worse and we all know how that can impact an overall record. If Smith not getting as many OPPORTUNITIES against BNG is a minus for Sanga how come AB not doing that well against BNG be a positive for him AGAINST Sanga? : ) Flawed logic but that's okay.

    GREAT article overall.

  • POSTED BY DarthKetan on | February 28, 2014, 4:49 GMT

    Unfair to include Zim circa 2000-03 in the Top Run Getters table, if you are trying to highlight weak opposition. I'd be interested in seeing how that table changes with that edit.

  • POSTED BY Kasunliya9 on | February 28, 2014, 4:46 GMT

    Sri Lanka haven't been given enough test matches in those 3 countries..when they are given it's cut down to 2 matches while India play 4....you can get accustomed to the conditions in the 3rd or 4th match well which Sangakkara rarely gets...unlike Sachin or Dravid.

  • POSTED BY ISB_ACC on | February 28, 2014, 4:43 GMT

    No 1 batsmen in the world...... proud to be a sri lankan...... Class act...........

  • POSTED BY ygkd on | February 28, 2014, 4:20 GMT

    I can hear some of my fellow Australians warming up already - Sanga makes runs against the Banglas but not in Oz. And that'd be right, but only because Bangladesh actually play Sri Lanka while Australia tends to ignore Asian teams other than India. Five Tests Down Under for Sangakkara in 13 years is not a lot. England (9 Tests) and South Africa (8) have seen more of Sangakkara. England has seen Sanga in three 3-Test series, while South Africa have played smaller series more often. Australia hosted Sri Lanka relatively recently but only for two Tests and probably won't invite them back for ages and by then Sanga and his mate Mahela will have no doubt retired. We did however get back-to-back Ashes... Wouldn't be surprised if there isn't a plan soon to go with back-to-back-to-back-to-back Ashes, followed by a back-to-back series with India. Such is the new order of things.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 4:18 GMT

    The last table in this article says it all !

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 4:13 GMT

    Sourav Ganugly is 3rd best with avg over 44. Also, Sangakara when playing as a specialist batsman has avg close to 48 in these 3 countries.

  • POSTED BY bored_iam on | February 28, 2014, 4:06 GMT

    There are no two doubts in my mind, that between Jayawardene & Sangakkara, Sangakkara is LEAPS ahead. He's consistent across teams, across conditions. Jayawardene appears a home-only batsman. Samaraweera was another under-rated batsman: An average over 40 recently really adds a lot of credence to the same. Jayawardene seems more hype than substance versus both these SL greats: Sangakkara & Samaraweera.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 3:20 GMT

    obviously this wont be posted, but indian columnist trying to put down a sri lankan cricketer. whats new

  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 28, 2014, 3:08 GMT

    why should runs against Bangladesh be separated from other countries? according to their fans they are world beaters.

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  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 28, 2014, 3:08 GMT

    why should runs against Bangladesh be separated from other countries? according to their fans they are world beaters.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 3:20 GMT

    obviously this wont be posted, but indian columnist trying to put down a sri lankan cricketer. whats new

  • POSTED BY bored_iam on | February 28, 2014, 4:06 GMT

    There are no two doubts in my mind, that between Jayawardene & Sangakkara, Sangakkara is LEAPS ahead. He's consistent across teams, across conditions. Jayawardene appears a home-only batsman. Samaraweera was another under-rated batsman: An average over 40 recently really adds a lot of credence to the same. Jayawardene seems more hype than substance versus both these SL greats: Sangakkara & Samaraweera.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 4:13 GMT

    Sourav Ganugly is 3rd best with avg over 44. Also, Sangakara when playing as a specialist batsman has avg close to 48 in these 3 countries.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 4:18 GMT

    The last table in this article says it all !

  • POSTED BY ygkd on | February 28, 2014, 4:20 GMT

    I can hear some of my fellow Australians warming up already - Sanga makes runs against the Banglas but not in Oz. And that'd be right, but only because Bangladesh actually play Sri Lanka while Australia tends to ignore Asian teams other than India. Five Tests Down Under for Sangakkara in 13 years is not a lot. England (9 Tests) and South Africa (8) have seen more of Sangakkara. England has seen Sanga in three 3-Test series, while South Africa have played smaller series more often. Australia hosted Sri Lanka relatively recently but only for two Tests and probably won't invite them back for ages and by then Sanga and his mate Mahela will have no doubt retired. We did however get back-to-back Ashes... Wouldn't be surprised if there isn't a plan soon to go with back-to-back-to-back-to-back Ashes, followed by a back-to-back series with India. Such is the new order of things.

  • POSTED BY ISB_ACC on | February 28, 2014, 4:43 GMT

    No 1 batsmen in the world...... proud to be a sri lankan...... Class act...........

  • POSTED BY Kasunliya9 on | February 28, 2014, 4:46 GMT

    Sri Lanka haven't been given enough test matches in those 3 countries..when they are given it's cut down to 2 matches while India play 4....you can get accustomed to the conditions in the 3rd or 4th match well which Sangakkara rarely gets...unlike Sachin or Dravid.

  • POSTED BY DarthKetan on | February 28, 2014, 4:49 GMT

    Unfair to include Zim circa 2000-03 in the Top Run Getters table, if you are trying to highlight weak opposition. I'd be interested in seeing how that table changes with that edit.

  • POSTED BY SLSup on | February 28, 2014, 5:04 GMT

    (Note to Author S Rajesh) This is a more acceptable/reasonable analysis for me than most I've seen for following reason: there is a genuine approach to determine where Sanga stands against current crop culminating in an EXACTING analysis of what he needs to do. Impressive! Worth the time spent reading your article twice over.

    One observation on an opinion you caste: you said Smith scored less overall against Bangladesh compared to Sangha but once you remove BNG & ZIM from their records you see Smith has 8352 runs to Sanga's 8799. Also, if AB hasn't done that well in the few games he'd played against BNG, why does it HAVE TO MEAN he would have done BETTER if he played more. Maybe he would do just as bad or worse and we all know how that can impact an overall record. If Smith not getting as many OPPORTUNITIES against BNG is a minus for Sanga how come AB not doing that well against BNG be a positive for him AGAINST Sanga? : ) Flawed logic but that's okay.

    GREAT article overall.