Interviews September 3, 2012

Our World T20 squad is a very good mix - Sangakkara

After being away from the game for over a month, Kumar Sangakkara talks about his time off and Sri Lanka's prospects in the upcoming World T20s
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Kumar Sangakkara, the No. 1 ranked Test batsman, is raring to pick up his bat after a finger injury sustained during the ODI series with India in July forced him into a break. Prior to his injury, Sangakkara had a successful year in all three formats leading to four ICC awards nominations including the Cricketer of the Year.

After what he says has been the longest period he has been away from the game, Sangakkara hopes to work on his fitness and make a strong comeback. He spoke to ESPNcricinfo about his recovery from the injury and Sri Lanka's chances in the upcoming World Twenty20 tournament.

Q: Has your injury healed completely and will you be fit for the World Twenty20?
KS: The injury's healed pretty well. I went and saw the surgeon a couple of days ago he was extremely happy with the progress. I've been trying to work on strengthening my hand; my wrist has weakened a bit over the four weeks it was in the cast. It's just a case of doing my rehab properly and by the beginning of next week I can get back to batting. It's hard not to touch a bat. As soon as the cast came off, I started just doing shadow batting so that I can get the feel of my hand around the grip, it also helps to strengthen my wrist and get me to kind of mentally prepare myself for playing. Initially when I touched the bat, I felt a bit strange. The finger felt that it was not really part of my hand but now within two days of working with Stephen our physiotherapist, he's been really great checking up on me at every stage. He's worked with me really well.

Q: Is this the longest period you have been out of cricket?
KS: There was another fracture I had on my thumb but we didn't have any international cricket at that time, so I was lucky. It was another 5-6 weeks that I spent. I had a hamstring injury in Australia but I was back in 17 days. This is probably the longest.

Q: You probably might have welcomed that break from cricket to be with your family?
KS: The injury gave me more time with my family. I don't think I have missed a game in about two and a half years and it was nice to spend some time with my family and my children, especially when they are 3 years old, it's a great age to be at home. Also I had to do a lot of household work, household chores, things that I had time to take care of. There were a lot of things I had my attention on, so I wasn't missing cricket. I had so much to do that it was good that my mind was off the game. It was a good rest. I just need to come back strong and work on my fitness and get back straight into playing.

Q: Your views on the Sri Lanka World T20 squad?
KS: Our World T20 side is a very good pick and with two new guys in Dilshan Munaweera and Akila Dananjaya, it would be interesting to see how these guys fare. Munaweera is a top order bat and will be competing for places with Mahela [Jayawardene] and [Tillakaratne] Dilshan at the helm. It would be difficult for him to get a look in at the start unless Mahela is forced to go down into the middle order, that's probably one way where Munaweera will be playing. But he's looked really solid in the Sri Lanka Premier League. He has a great body language and great presence at the crease. I watched him time the ball and also he's shown a lot of maturity from the way he started the tournament. I saw him get into the six overs and batting on. He showed a slight weakness against spin at the start but managed to get over that very quickly. He looks like a guy who learns very quickly.

Akila from the way he bowled in the nets and the way he bowled in the SLPL, he looks a lot more mature than his 18 years. It would be interesting to see how he can make the side and what combination we would play to include him in the side. He is an exciting young prospect. He is new and still a bit raw, but most of the sides haven't seen him so when you have variations like that, it's good.

I've been very impressed with Ajantha Mendis, after seven months away, he's come back into this tournament and bowled excellently. He's fielded really well and he looks like he's got a new energy and a new enthusiasm that's going to really work for us.

Then we have the solid guys who have been there, Rangana Herath, [Nuwan] Kulasekara and [Lasith] Malinga, Mahela and Dilshan, at the top, [Lahiru] Thirimanne, Jeevan Mendis and Angelo [Mathews] in the middle and Dinesh Chandimal to bat anywhere, basically he's more suited to bat at no. 3. We have a very good mixture with Shaminda Eranga who's come back very strong from injury. It looks a good and balanced side, now it's a case of going to the games and performing.

Q: Akila, like Ajantha Mendis before him, has been tagged a mystery spinner. What's so special about him?
KS: He's got a great attitude, he is very competitive on the field and he's got good variations in bowling - about three or four balls. He bowls at a lesser pace than Mendis whose variations were a bit more subtle when he started. Akila is not Mendis, but he's got something different to him. That's what you look for in a big tournament when you are trying to play an opposition and try and get a competitive edge.

Sri Lanka have produced some of these bowlers over the years but mystery is the wrong word to use to a spinner. There is no mystery in modern day cricket. Everyone has studied everyone. It's just a case of reading the hand and once a batsman starts doing that, the bowler of course has to change to stay a step ahead. It's very interesting times for Akila I just hope he keeps this attitude, keeps learning and keeps improving as the years go by.

Q: Who are the key players to watch in the World T20?
KS: It's going to be an interesting time. We got some great T20 players playing in this tournament and it's hard to single out anyone. Australia always play well, England's really improved in T20 cricket, South Africa are a great side, Pakistan look very strong but West Indies look like they are extremely well suited to play this format now. With Sunil Narine, Chris Gayle back at the top, [Kieron] Pollard, [Darren] Sammy, Dwayne Smith, Darren Bravo, Dwayne Bravo and Marlon Samuels back they've got a great mix. West Indies are a side to watch.

We of course play our cricket in a different manner to all these sides. We have players who will stand out, guys like Mathews, Dilshan, Mahela, Malinga, they'll be the stars. The rest of the guys work hard to give them the foundation they need to shine. Our job is to make sure that once we know our roles, we execute it well. We'll be a very tough side to beat.

Q: Your views on the three World T20 venues?
KS: Khettarama (R Premadasa Stadium) is a classical example where 220 (in ODIs) meant you usually won a game. The ball would turn square, you win the toss, you bat and you win the game. It changed for a while where you batted first not because it turned but because the ball started swinging insanely in the night. When the wickets were relaid, in the first few games there was a lot of turn and now they've settled down into beautiful wickets where batting first or second you have an equal chance of winning and batting under lights has become so much easier that some sides now prefer to chase.

Pallekele seems to have a lot in it at night. It seams and swings around and that will be an interesting challenge for us being a Sri Lankan side playing in our conditions to encounter those conditions.

Hambantota is completely different. There is quite a strong wind from one side and the pitch can be a bit up and down. Our pitches are now offering different challenges but the vicious turn that it used to have is no more. So sides have to adjust accordingly.

Q: Have we lost the home advantage in the sense that we are giving other sides also an opportunity with the type of pitches we prepare?
KS: Our sides have also changed a little bit. We don't depend on spin alone anymore or just a fast bowler in Chaminda Vaas. We have different sets of fast bowlers and different sets of spinners. With the change in conditions, our sides have changed but home advantage is not only about wickets, it's about playing in your country, playing in front of the people that cheer and love you. It's about being comfortable at home. All of those things add to your home advantage on wickets. We can't just look at a wicket and say we want it exactly the way it suits us, especially now they have independent curators who monitor wickets. We've got to learn to roll with the punches and change with the times. Playing at home in a World Cup is a massive advantage.

Q: Would you put your team down as one of the favourites?
KS: Sri Lanka have always been favourites in my view in any tournament that we play because we've been able to rise to those big occasions really well as a unit and adjust accordingly. In big tournaments we always had a great run. If you take our last 4-5 years it's been an amazing run in big tournaments. We just need to believe in ourselves and believe in that fact and keep playing.

Q: What is the biggest change you see the team has undergone that has made them so competitive?
KS: Physically, we can get a lot stronger and that prevents injury. Mentally, we still need to work on controlling emotions, attitude, addressing problems, having better communication with the management, players and administration. All of those things help. Even better relationships with the media help in ensuring that there's development and an improvement on the field. Skillwise we have always been very good. We'll be restructuring certain sections of our first-class cricket in the near future and that will help.

As a side we have changed in our make-up. We have accepted the fact that Murali and Vaasy are gone, Sanath [Jayasuriya] and Marvan [Atapattu] are also gone and our side's make up has changed to a more settled outlook where we understand the role of fast bowlers, where we have a new set to choose from. The spinners are different, our batting make-up has changed, we don't have the Jayasuriya explosion at the top anymore. So we started to win games in different ways. At the same time we have to be a bit careful because playing spin is one of our strengths and we need to keep working on that and improving on it because what I've seen around the world is that other sides have improved remarkably against spin - sweeping, reverse sweeping, all these shots have given them a huge advantage. So we need to keep pace with it and go beyond that because traditionally we are very good players of spin.

In Asia, we are the best players of pace as well. If you take all the Asian countries, we have this great advantage and we keep producing very good players. If you take the Chandimals and the Thirimannes, they've been excellent finds. Even [Jeevan] Mendis is doing really well. We need to take them and polish them up so that they become greats.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY on | September 6, 2012, 20:12 GMT

    One of the greatest challenges we face in our lifetimes is becoming comfortable in our own skin. A person who is secure with himself is much more likely to achieve success, have meaningful relationships, and be respected by others.

    A person who is insecure finds difficulty in many aspects of life. Since most people are insecure, a person who is secure has power and influence over others; even if they are not otherwise powerful.

  • POSTED BY MunafAhmed811 on | September 6, 2012, 17:08 GMT

    Seriously no India. Wow if the current ODI Worldcup holders and U-19 world champions and previously T20 2007 Worldcup holder are given no chance...tthen Sangakarra is living in his own dream world.

  • POSTED BY Last_ride on | September 5, 2012, 16:19 GMT

    Haha In the End South Africa are going to hammer every other team.Lets face it they have all the tools.The second most destructive opener after Gayle in Levi.The most destructive middle order batsman in the world in Ab De Villiers.The best Fast bowler in the world in Dale steyn.And finally the greatest All rounder ever in Jacques kallis.The only other team that can well at least come close is West Indies.....Please publish...

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | September 5, 2012, 12:58 GMT

    @ TheIndiaRockers, this T20 world cup is open by and large. I think West Indies are the favorites. But home advantage will help us get to the semi finals at least. Anyway, good luck to all and looking forward to and exciting series.

  • POSTED BY ovzdatta151 on | September 5, 2012, 8:56 GMT

    T20 cricket is like a hit and trial method. Any team can defeat any team on a given day. Well in 2007 WC in West Indies, where India lost to Bangladesh and Pakistan lost to Ireland. Both the teams were out of the tournament @ first round itself. So one can;t really predict the future which team will ultimately gonna win the T20 WC. In paper I would say Australia, West Indies, Pakistan, South Africa and Srilanka are very strong team. And definitely SL holds an edge over other team as they are the host nation. England are the WC in T20 format one cannot underestimate there presence. As far as my team India is concern, bowling is the biggest worry and in addition to that the how Yuvi performs in his come back. Because Yuvi is the main key for success of this Indian team.

  • POSTED BY on | September 5, 2012, 3:15 GMT

    maddy20 what about the 2009wc sanga played nicely in England he will play better here

  • POSTED BY TheIndiaRockers on | September 5, 2012, 3:12 GMT

    @Sinhaya on (September 04 2012, 15:29 PM GMT-- Same word what u have mentiond is sutable for u (Dont count the chickens before they hatch)....Before winning dont dream it may hurt u,when SL loose....

  • POSTED BY maddy20 on | September 4, 2012, 21:51 GMT

    SA, WI and Ind are favorites for this cup. SL has Sanga who will sure as hell slow down the game and help the other teams win as we have seen in the recent India tour.

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | September 4, 2012, 15:29 GMT

    @TheIndiaRockers, yes our u19 campaign this year was poor. But dont forget how SA got kicked out of the 2000 U19 world cup where Nepal eliminated them but that never had any bearing on their cricket later on. Sri Lanka have done well in both the last 2 T20 editions so nothing can stop us doing well yet again. Dont count the chickens before they hatch.

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | September 4, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    @cool2cool, yes 43 all out in Paarl this year was a disaster but double digit all out figures are a facet of cricket. England 72 all out in Abu Dhabi this year, Aussies 47 all out in Cape Town and even 88 all out in Headingly. Also, you recall how Sanath Jayasuriya scored 189 against India 11 years ago and got India all out for 54 as below? Recall? http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/65900.html

  • POSTED BY on | September 6, 2012, 20:12 GMT

    One of the greatest challenges we face in our lifetimes is becoming comfortable in our own skin. A person who is secure with himself is much more likely to achieve success, have meaningful relationships, and be respected by others.

    A person who is insecure finds difficulty in many aspects of life. Since most people are insecure, a person who is secure has power and influence over others; even if they are not otherwise powerful.

  • POSTED BY MunafAhmed811 on | September 6, 2012, 17:08 GMT

    Seriously no India. Wow if the current ODI Worldcup holders and U-19 world champions and previously T20 2007 Worldcup holder are given no chance...tthen Sangakarra is living in his own dream world.

  • POSTED BY Last_ride on | September 5, 2012, 16:19 GMT

    Haha In the End South Africa are going to hammer every other team.Lets face it they have all the tools.The second most destructive opener after Gayle in Levi.The most destructive middle order batsman in the world in Ab De Villiers.The best Fast bowler in the world in Dale steyn.And finally the greatest All rounder ever in Jacques kallis.The only other team that can well at least come close is West Indies.....Please publish...

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | September 5, 2012, 12:58 GMT

    @ TheIndiaRockers, this T20 world cup is open by and large. I think West Indies are the favorites. But home advantage will help us get to the semi finals at least. Anyway, good luck to all and looking forward to and exciting series.

  • POSTED BY ovzdatta151 on | September 5, 2012, 8:56 GMT

    T20 cricket is like a hit and trial method. Any team can defeat any team on a given day. Well in 2007 WC in West Indies, where India lost to Bangladesh and Pakistan lost to Ireland. Both the teams were out of the tournament @ first round itself. So one can;t really predict the future which team will ultimately gonna win the T20 WC. In paper I would say Australia, West Indies, Pakistan, South Africa and Srilanka are very strong team. And definitely SL holds an edge over other team as they are the host nation. England are the WC in T20 format one cannot underestimate there presence. As far as my team India is concern, bowling is the biggest worry and in addition to that the how Yuvi performs in his come back. Because Yuvi is the main key for success of this Indian team.

  • POSTED BY on | September 5, 2012, 3:15 GMT

    maddy20 what about the 2009wc sanga played nicely in England he will play better here

  • POSTED BY TheIndiaRockers on | September 5, 2012, 3:12 GMT

    @Sinhaya on (September 04 2012, 15:29 PM GMT-- Same word what u have mentiond is sutable for u (Dont count the chickens before they hatch)....Before winning dont dream it may hurt u,when SL loose....

  • POSTED BY maddy20 on | September 4, 2012, 21:51 GMT

    SA, WI and Ind are favorites for this cup. SL has Sanga who will sure as hell slow down the game and help the other teams win as we have seen in the recent India tour.

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | September 4, 2012, 15:29 GMT

    @TheIndiaRockers, yes our u19 campaign this year was poor. But dont forget how SA got kicked out of the 2000 U19 world cup where Nepal eliminated them but that never had any bearing on their cricket later on. Sri Lanka have done well in both the last 2 T20 editions so nothing can stop us doing well yet again. Dont count the chickens before they hatch.

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | September 4, 2012, 15:24 GMT

    @cool2cool, yes 43 all out in Paarl this year was a disaster but double digit all out figures are a facet of cricket. England 72 all out in Abu Dhabi this year, Aussies 47 all out in Cape Town and even 88 all out in Headingly. Also, you recall how Sanath Jayasuriya scored 189 against India 11 years ago and got India all out for 54 as below? Recall? http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/65900.html

  • POSTED BY on | September 4, 2012, 15:19 GMT

    Sri Lanka's world cup record is superb. so we are always favorites at the big stage

  • POSTED BY on | September 4, 2012, 13:03 GMT

    Well yeah of course Sri Lanka are automatic favourites considering the tournament will be held in their territory and they recently played SLPL so really prepared for the tournament already whereas all the other teams have these T20 series and practice matches coming up. Besides them, the other strong contenders in my mind are West Indies and India but who knows?...

  • POSTED BY on | September 4, 2012, 12:57 GMT

    Sangakara Think only About Srilanka , He know India one of faverate team win T20 world Cup-2012 , he scare to tell , i know india fast bowling have issues t 20 matter of one over eiter bolwing or batting. one thing if india went sami final they know how to win big games they are going to bang any team any place , it ansewr of selfish sangakara

  • POSTED BY TheIndiaRockers on | September 4, 2012, 12:38 GMT

    @Udendra --> Wow u r absolutely rite..Sl is favourite team to loose in group match..Once agains SL lion is going to be spoon holder in world T20 as similar as U19 WC...Lol. Yo man just wait & watch.

  • POSTED BY Haleos on | September 4, 2012, 10:04 GMT

    Lately SL cricketers seem to be living in a bubble. They are good but I wont put them as favorites. @ shaantanu - spot on. Sanga, Mahela et al always think India is not up there as best even after getting defeated numerous times. Why do they play IPL then. Keep playing in ur SPL.

  • POSTED BY on | September 4, 2012, 9:15 GMT

    If West-Indies don't play a single genuine bowler in their side, they still would have 7 decent bowlers to bowl 20 overs. Bravo, Sammy, Pollard, Russel, Samuels, Gayle and D. Smith. lol. But on a serious note, WI's line-up shall be :- 1) Gayle 2) D. Smith 3) Darren Bravo 4) Samuels 5) Dwayne Barvo 6) Pollard 7) Ramdin 8) Sammy 9) Russel 10) Rampaul 11) Narine. Only weak link is Ramdin !

  • POSTED BY on | September 4, 2012, 8:57 GMT

    No Sri Lanka, No India, No Pakistan, No Australia - Watch out for West-Indies, they are the favourites at least for me. Prepare spinning tracks or fast tracks or whatever; Gayle, Pollard, Dareen Bravo, Dwayne Bravo, Pollard, Samuels, Sammy, Russel - they all can play on any of them. Bowling is not weak either. Naine, Rampaul, Roach, Russel, Sammy, Bravo & Gayle ! lol so many all-rounders. This is The Best chance for West Indies to take the title.

  • POSTED BY shaantanu on | September 4, 2012, 7:37 GMT

    According to Sanga every team has a chance to win the WC except India,NZ and BD.Who knows India may still spring a surprise......

  • POSTED BY tomk_1977 on | September 4, 2012, 2:00 GMT

    Who will win the T20 WC? Not sure...

    SangaKoora delusional? Hell YA....

  • POSTED BY auroraboy on | September 4, 2012, 1:29 GMT

    cant say for anyone else but i got west indies for the wold cup

  • POSTED BY Dian007 on | September 4, 2012, 0:35 GMT

    I dont want to see Mahela, Dilshan and Sanga for the 2014 T20 world cup..strong statement..

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | September 4, 2012, 0:34 GMT

    @Harmony111, you live in a world of mythical fantasy illussions! We have never been a loser side all these years. We have had our fair share of success. In our away tours lately, we avoided humiliation indeed. We never got whitewashed recently at all. Check the facts please. Mahela is well respected and that is why he is given space to write his own column. Sri Lanka were the winners in the ODI tri series in 2010 January in Bangladesh, also 2010 tri series in Zimbabwe which featured India and also the 2010 August tri series in Dambulla which featured India and NZ. So you are clearly wrong. Post 2011 world cup though we struggled to win series, we still did well in many. Yeah we got decimated in the CB series this year and that was why we made it to the finals right? Yeah at home this year we got decimated by England to draw the tests 1-1. Keep dreaming!

  • POSTED BY Mohammad_Imran on | September 3, 2012, 23:22 GMT

    Pak team seems to be loaded with the most proven match winners... just hope they came through - Imran Nazir, Saeed Ajmal, Abdul Razzaq, Umar Gul, Shahid Afridi, Akmals... T20 though is very unpredictable any of these teams can take it: Pak, WI, Ind, SA, SL.

  • POSTED BY Cpt.Meanster on | September 3, 2012, 21:43 GMT

    @TheRedox: You don't even have to remind them. Most Indians have already forgotten about that and moved on. There is no use of dwelling on BAD things from the past. It's how you put that into perspective and improve in the future. Coming to the point, India have a REAL chance to win this tournament for the 2nd time. Sanga may have forgotten about India but that doesn't mean India are out of it by any means. In fact India are most likely one of the last 4 teams. From there on, it's anybody's game.

  • POSTED BY CricketPissek on | September 3, 2012, 21:38 GMT

    nothing for the indian fans to take personally. sanga was asked who should be looked out for and he named players and teams according to his opinion that may surprise the world. india are always amongst favourites, esp in the sub-cont. however, in T20 we have to look beyond the favourites as ANY team could win it. Bangladesh, New Zealand, and Zimbabwe who Sanga didnt mention either are as favourite as anyone else IMO.

  • POSTED BY amanroy on | September 3, 2012, 21:21 GMT

    LOL he didn't mention India that itself proves he is afraid of India. Anyways we don't care about words but believe in action. And yes WI, India, Aus and pak will be the semi-finalists.

  • POSTED BY Cpt.Meanster on | September 3, 2012, 20:53 GMT

    Good luck to SL for their desire to win the World T20. Every one is entitled to their own opinions. As an Indian fan, I can DEFINITELY see India making it to the last 4. They have the team to go that far. Their main problem is their bowling, especially their fast bowling which will SURELY leak precious runs. If they can somehow limit that damage then they have the batting to post huge scores and overhaul ANY target. I also feel PAK has a great chance along with Bangladesh. Bangladesh are not weak in T20. Most of their players played in the SLPL so they have some knowledge about SL condition. I honestly CANNOT see AUS, ENG winning it. They are just 'WEAK' in Asian conditions and the nature of T20 simply doesn't allow them to put pressure on the Asian sides. SA and WI will be my two non-Asian favourites to lift the trophy MAINLY because of the IPL influence some of their players have. Having said all that, let the BEST team win. In the end T20 is the winner !! God bless.

  • POSTED BY Harmony111 on | September 3, 2012, 20:41 GMT

    The more I read about Sangakkara and Jayawardena the more I get the impression that they live in their own worlds in utter delusions. Sangakkara thinks his side is the fav to win the World T20, he thinks his side the best player of pace in Asia - does he know how many series or even tests they have won in those conditions? Forget that, how many have SL won in India lol. Jayawardena on the other hand sees his team being decimated every now and then and after that he writes an article talking about the positives from the current loss and the need to look froward to the nest series (for another decimation). These delusions may be one of the reasons why Sri Lanka have been a loser side all these years.

  • POSTED BY nilb on | September 3, 2012, 19:57 GMT

    I don't know about SL but India will definitely win if the curators prepare flat pitches. They are simply the specialists in batting on flat pitches so having Steyn, Morkel, Roach, Anderson wont matter.

  • POSTED BY warneneverchuck on | September 3, 2012, 19:53 GMT

    @sajitha. India don't need any favor to win WC. Last month only we won under19 Wher BD perform far better than SL

  • POSTED BY shravester on | September 3, 2012, 18:58 GMT

    All,

    Just relax! Everyone is entitled to his/her opinion. KS has his, which is fine.

    Its just a game at the end of the day and all top nations play excellent cricket, hence anyone can win. There is no clear favourite like the great West Indies team from the 70's. Hence, in simple terms no one has any bragging rights, which is the best thing.

    Just enjoy, appreciate the tournament.

    T20's are the BEST, anyone can win. Although my heart still says India, being an Indian ;) haha enjoy guys!!

  • POSTED BY LSmith on | September 3, 2012, 18:15 GMT

    viru gambhir kohli raina yuvraj dhoni pathan bhajji ashwin zaheer balaji Who wouldn't think this team winner...

  • POSTED BY Udendra on | September 3, 2012, 18:05 GMT

    SL, WI, PAK & ENG will make the Semi finals. ZIM will thrash IND.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 17:47 GMT

    You know why INDIA has better chance this time around(hopping for semis at least) because SIR RAVINDRA JADEJA is not playing ... cheers...

  • POSTED BY Lakpj on | September 3, 2012, 16:47 GMT

    SL have a chance mostly due to the tournament format, if there are no major upsets in the group stages then super 8 Groups will be like SL, WI, Eng and NZ and in the other group India, Pak, SA and Aus that means 2 of those highly fancied teams will miss out. On the other hand WI and SL have a big chance from the other group Eng won't have a chance with the current team if KP is also missing. So all the pundits who shout for various teams just check the tournament format first. Your most fancied team may not even make to the semis.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 16:45 GMT

    @ ravikiran.bits....he...he.....he didn't mention india because he has forgotten them..India is the worst team? India dont stand a chance?.....ok, its not like than man...he mentioned west indies because they improved rapidly last few months, so they stand a very good chance to win the world cup....Its not like he wants to say WI are definitely better than AUS,IND,PAK,SA....will see, better team will win at the end...anyway if you want to win the world cup by words just now, here it is from sri lanka-INDIA WON THE T20 WC 2012... he..he..cheers man.....

  • POSTED BY Suraksh on | September 3, 2012, 16:24 GMT

    @Shevon Perera : Pity on you

  • POSTED BY Wannabekenobi on | September 3, 2012, 16:20 GMT

    All these indians, jeez, unbelievable. Virat Kohli hasnt done jack in T20 cricket, West Indies is by far the favourites, if India makes it to the finals well and good, but i think Sanga is spot on in naming the favourites for the tournament. Sri Lanka may have not had the great run against India lately but we are the world beaters in big tournaments as he has clearly mentioned. SL is the success story of cricket, no other side, after coming so late into international cricket has made as much impact as Sri Lanka has, winning a world cup, an ICC champions trophy, making it to the T20 final and two other World Cup finals. Not to mention the countless other quadrangular and tri series wins. Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and other nations that are finding their way in cricket STILL seem to be finding their way. Indians as usual think no end of themselves and that is often the trouble attitude, modesty and humility is missing. That is true class. That is Sanga and that is Sri Lanka.

  • POSTED BY dariuscorny on | September 3, 2012, 16:18 GMT

    @pakistan_victorious as they say "your gain is neighbours envy" your comments completely give that indication,well im not into it,so lets get into it(WC 2011),where were you when Ian Bell was plumb lbw against India at Bangalore and was adjudged not out using DRS,that cost India match,talking about semifianal Sachin was not out,it was fault of your fielders who were shivering under pressure rather,and were dropping couple of catches from the "MASTER"

  • POSTED BY spiritwithin on | September 3, 2012, 16:12 GMT

    what a humble man,he call his own team as favourate,good joke,except for 1996 WC the SL r nothing less than CHOKERS in ICC events,what more they also starting to lose at home,he conveniently forgot that SL lost both ODI & T20 game to india just last month,add series loss to aus at home...i doubt if this Lankan team will even reach SemiFinal ahead of Aus,India,Eng,Pak and SA

  • POSTED BY mathewjohn2176 on | September 3, 2012, 15:50 GMT

    "In Asia, we are the best players of pace as well. If you take all the Asian countries, we have this great advantage and we keep producing very good players" Is Sanga serious in telling this?self appreciation is good sometimes but there should be some facts to back up the claim.I find Pakistan and India team had better players who performed well against pace and won series and more test matches abroad than srilanka in last 20 yrs.By looking at the stats ,Sanga can't say this.I am really amused this statement coming from Sanga,who is my favorite SL cricketer next to murali.He is wrong to say this and there are numerous players from Pakistan and India produced a batting legends who performed well overseas for a period of time and he is making mockery of it.real sad.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 15:41 GMT

    Sri Lanka will become runners up like 2007 wc, 2009 wt20 and 2011 wc . Lol:)

  • POSTED BY ashok_cricfan on | September 3, 2012, 15:41 GMT

    @ pakistan_victorious--india has been proving itself by constantly defeating pak and SL in the recent past, which makes it a favourite (atleast one among the 5 teams mentioned by him). sangakarra's being jealous of india is not apparent for the first time, so nothing new in this interview. so guys just ignore.

  • POSTED BY jasonpete on | September 3, 2012, 15:28 GMT

    Posted by pakistan_victorious on (September 03 2012, 13:37 PM GMT), Pakistan lost to india due one reason only.ie.their butter fingers fielders.They dropped tendulkar almost 4 times and then you can't expect to win a match.Accept and move on.By the way DRS was used and the correct decision was made on that day.So sulking again n again not going to help.India also got affected by Ian Bell's decision against england.But that's the way DRS work.Anyway it's ICC tournament,so DRS is a compulsory one and a welcome move as well.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 15:20 GMT

    Sanga you did a wrong thing not mentioning India (Even though they are not a team to mention)

    Now let the crying begin :)

  • POSTED BY raghavan88 on | September 3, 2012, 15:11 GMT

    India vs SL/Pak Final is my prediction.India are among the favs being limited overs champs and its the subcontinent.West Indies are dark horses with Gayle n Narine.

  • POSTED BY Harmony111 on | September 3, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    @pakistan_victorious: Oh so Pak won in 2009 so are fav in 2012 but India won it in 2007 so they are not fav, great logic. And SL have never won the T20 WC but still are favs - Ha Ha Ha. As for the Sachin lbw in the WC Semi Final - did you go through the detailed report given by hawk eye after the WC over that appeal and why it was turned down? Finally, what is your stand over India's opposition to DRS? India is against DRS right. If India had so much control over DRS and could manipulate it as and when required then why would India oppose DRS? You got the point ha? If India opposes DRS then you blame India, if India plays with DRS and a decision goes in its favour then you again blame India. What is your final stand? I guess your stand is to oppose whatever India/BCCI does right?

  • POSTED BY jweerasinghe on | September 3, 2012, 15:08 GMT

    India always win games by not using DRS.Kholi and Dhoni always get second chances.Two or three wickets can change the entire game to their advantage.Look at yesterdays test match with Newzeeland.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 15:00 GMT

    WI gonna win for sure ! they r born to play T20's

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 14:45 GMT

    We Sri Lankans wholeheartedly expect Sri Lanka winning the T20 - 2012 Championship.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 14:44 GMT

    Its subcontinent baby.... and you know who is boss here.... now a days there is no one to give respect in SL team after GREAT Murali and Jayasurya....

  • POSTED BY rahulcricket007 on | September 3, 2012, 14:37 GMT

    @SANGAKARRA . YOU FORGOT TO MENTION VIRAT KOHLI AS ONE OF THE PLAYERS TO WATCH . I CAN GURANTEE IT THAT VIRAT WILL BE ONE OF THE LEADIG SCORERS IN THIS TOURNAMENT .

  • POSTED BY rahulcricket007 on | September 3, 2012, 14:35 GMT

    @PAKISTAN VICTORIOUS . LETS SEE WHO WILL WIN .

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 14:30 GMT

    We've just thrashed u in ur own backyard 5-1 but still we're not favourites,well I take it as a sarcastic comment.We Indians will prove it this time that who's the big daddy....watch out for us.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 14:28 GMT

    Im SL fan.love to see SL wiinning tropies...if someone says SL is favourites it's laughing matter these days coz when ever INDIA come's & play all big names will play different game..sad to say IPL changed SL cricket..Until IPL BOYS play for SL can't see BRIGHT FURURE!!

  • POSTED BY TheRedox on | September 3, 2012, 14:26 GMT

    Beating NZ 2-0 at home,And all the Indians out in the park,lol.Looks like someone has to remember them about 8-0.

  • POSTED BY prannsshu on | September 3, 2012, 14:10 GMT

    England has the best team for t20. I knw some people d0nt agree with me, bt wait n watch the finale will be between england nd lanka. May the best team win

  • POSTED BY Humdingers on | September 3, 2012, 14:10 GMT

    West Indies to win this one. Also - Anyone remember the last time Sri Lanka won anything? Are they the new chokers?

  • POSTED BY arunmp3 on | September 3, 2012, 14:10 GMT

    indians dont care abt sanga ! just nw we hv smashed lankans black n blue in the series:d...........

    to me india n windies are big favourites......................

    ps: with talent coming up in india it wont be a miracle if india become a super power in cricket like wat china has done in badmiton.............

  • POSTED BY ravikiran.bits on | September 3, 2012, 13:43 GMT

    he wantdly didn't mention india in fav, he also included WI. it shows he is afraid of india. india played in SL conditions most recently will give out an edge to them.

    The conditions suites India SL and Pak. But sl are not good enuf to win a tournament, Pak is a danger and India are obviously the fav's of the torunament than any other team

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 13:43 GMT

    & comes indians.. YOU FORGOT INDIA!! YOU FORGOT INDIA!! LOL dnt worry indians u will win even if u guys dont play at the WC lol

  • POSTED BY Yousufahmedl on | September 3, 2012, 13:37 GMT

    @Harmony111, we know how India won the 2011 world cup. Saw how Tendulkar's LBW was denied in the semi finals when plumb? Keep using DRS to manipulate all for India's gain. India cant be favorites either after not entering the last T20 world cup semi finals. Also, Pakistan won the 2009 edition and it is we and Sri Lanka who deserve to enter the finals.

  • POSTED BY yohandf1984 on | September 3, 2012, 13:27 GMT

    Ha ha ha . Indian pundit s hv already come guns blazing .who cares ? Sanga is our best and he clearly mentioned his willingness to do well in world T20 . that is the kind of mentality we need going forward in this tournament. Knowing these guys doing their best , we always back them . GO AHEAD SRI LANKA . we are with you guys

  • POSTED BY rahulcricket007 on | September 3, 2012, 13:16 GMT

    HMM SANGA MENTIONED AUS , PAK WI , ENG , SA IN THE ARTICLES BUT FORGOT TO SAY ANYTHING ABOUT INDIA . ALSO HE DIDN'T NAMED KOHLI AS ONE OF THE PLAYERS TO WATCH WHO HAS BEEN IN THE FORM OF LIFE IN EVERY FORM OF THE GAME . MIND GAMES SANGA . YOU KNOW THAT EITHER IN SEMIFINAL OR FINAL THERE IS DEFINITELY GOING TO BE A CLASH BETWENN INDIA & SRI LANKA .

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 13:15 GMT

    Well said sanga. We hope that you will be at your very best as you are our main batsman...

  • POSTED BY RandyOZ on | September 3, 2012, 13:10 GMT

    Australia are the hot favourites I would say.

  • POSTED BY All_IS_WELL on | September 3, 2012, 12:23 GMT

    sri lanka will win 2012 t20 wc

  • POSTED BY Harmony111 on | September 3, 2012, 12:12 GMT

    Thrashed 1-4 in ODIs and 0-1 in T20 at home recently and then call your team fav to win the World T20. ROTFL.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 12:01 GMT

    Kumar Sangakkara: "Home advantage is not only about wickets, it's about playing in your country, playing in front of the people that cheer and love you. It's about being comfortable at home."

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 11:52 GMT

    Dude u forgot india come out of your dream.

  • POSTED BY chapathishot on | September 3, 2012, 11:20 GMT

    Sour grapes the loss in another world cup so not even mentioned India

  • POSTED BY chapathishot on | September 3, 2012, 11:17 GMT

    What a humble man LOL great players of pace in whole Asia biggest joke

  • POSTED BY jonesy2 on | September 3, 2012, 11:07 GMT

    leading the candidates for the cricketer of the year award? um. no, just no

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • POSTED BY jonesy2 on | September 3, 2012, 11:07 GMT

    leading the candidates for the cricketer of the year award? um. no, just no

  • POSTED BY chapathishot on | September 3, 2012, 11:17 GMT

    What a humble man LOL great players of pace in whole Asia biggest joke

  • POSTED BY chapathishot on | September 3, 2012, 11:20 GMT

    Sour grapes the loss in another world cup so not even mentioned India

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 11:52 GMT

    Dude u forgot india come out of your dream.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 12:01 GMT

    Kumar Sangakkara: "Home advantage is not only about wickets, it's about playing in your country, playing in front of the people that cheer and love you. It's about being comfortable at home."

  • POSTED BY Harmony111 on | September 3, 2012, 12:12 GMT

    Thrashed 1-4 in ODIs and 0-1 in T20 at home recently and then call your team fav to win the World T20. ROTFL.

  • POSTED BY All_IS_WELL on | September 3, 2012, 12:23 GMT

    sri lanka will win 2012 t20 wc

  • POSTED BY RandyOZ on | September 3, 2012, 13:10 GMT

    Australia are the hot favourites I would say.

  • POSTED BY on | September 3, 2012, 13:15 GMT

    Well said sanga. We hope that you will be at your very best as you are our main batsman...

  • POSTED BY rahulcricket007 on | September 3, 2012, 13:16 GMT

    HMM SANGA MENTIONED AUS , PAK WI , ENG , SA IN THE ARTICLES BUT FORGOT TO SAY ANYTHING ABOUT INDIA . ALSO HE DIDN'T NAMED KOHLI AS ONE OF THE PLAYERS TO WATCH WHO HAS BEEN IN THE FORM OF LIFE IN EVERY FORM OF THE GAME . MIND GAMES SANGA . YOU KNOW THAT EITHER IN SEMIFINAL OR FINAL THERE IS DEFINITELY GOING TO BE A CLASH BETWENN INDIA & SRI LANKA .