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Sangakkara defends role of player agents

Sa'adi Thawfeeq

February 25, 2013

Comments: 13 | Text size: A | A

Kumar Sangakkara at a training session, Hobart, December 13, 2012
Kumar Sangakkara said having an agent has helped him concentrate on his cricket © AFP
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Kumar Sangakkara believes the role of player agents has been misunderstood by Sri Lanka Cricket and said they were not a detriment to the game. His comments came after the Sri Lankan board had said it will not recognise agents any more and will deal directly with the players instead.

"There is a lot of misunderstanding and an even bigger case of miscommunication as to what the role of a player-manager or agent is," Sangakkara said. "They are not here for the detriment of the game."

SLC secretary Nishantha Ranatunga had said agents "bring more negatives than positives" to Sri Lanka cricket, but Sangakkara said that was not the case. He said that if there were issues with the role of agents, there should be a provision for dialogue where problems could be solved.

"If at anytime the player manager issue has a massive negative impact on the game, it is important there is a forum where it can be discussed with the players and Sri Lanka Cricket and then come to an understanding and a decision taken," Sangakkara said. "There has been quite a lot of media pressure as well, and pressure from former players on player management, so Sri Lanka Cricket has taken a stand where they will avoid any complications or misunderstandings that can arise in the future by saying we will communicate directly with the players. I don't see anything wrong in that. A statement was also made that the players can go ahead and employ anyone of their choosing, which is of course their freewill and their right to do so."

Sangakkara said he had benefitted from having an agent manage his off-field affairs during his career because it had freed him up to focus on his cricket.

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Posted by   on (February 27, 2013, 10:20 GMT)

I think that some players can use player agents for their benefits.As a example,players like Kumar,Mahela and Dilshan.They are very experienced players not only inside the ground but also outside from the ground.They know how to use a player agent.But the newcomers don't know how to use them.Some of them don't know even what is the role of a agent.So we must look at this from two sides.

Posted by   on (February 27, 2013, 7:29 GMT)

Agents should be prohibited! Just because Sanga defends it, it can't be right all the time. He probably gets things right most of the time, but not all the time. He too is no saint!

Posted by Udendra on (February 26, 2013, 5:46 GMT)

After Sanga has spoken on the matter, people seem to comment in favour of player agents. Even in this forum.

Posted by Dr.Lakson on (February 26, 2013, 4:34 GMT)

Sanga is correct. Oh discussions! What else can we expect in a state where democracy is rapidly deteriorating....... Definitely players should be allowed to concentrate on the game and manager/agents should take care of the management. This simply a move by the SLC to manipulate the players. The recent non payment of player fees due to bad management of the boards affairs is a good example of mismanagement of SLC and to expect SLC to take care of the players would be a joke! Hope this state affairs would not lead SLC on the path of Zimbabwe cricket!

Posted by miles100 on (February 26, 2013, 2:33 GMT)

I think this is not an issue that SLC should be concerned about. SLC should be more concerned about building cricket in the country especially in the villages, investing on building sporting facilities for youngsters, creating fast/bouncy wickets, encouraging fast bowlers, investing on nutritional food & supplements,fitness coaches rather than worrying about player agents. SLC spent more time on political issues and less time in building cricket in the country. Player agents are not the reason why we don't have wicket taking fast bowlers in test cricket. Player agents are not the reason why we didn't have a strong senior middle order. Player agents are not the reason why we mentally struggled and gave away 4 world cups. Hope they will worry about more important things in the future.

Posted by   on (February 26, 2013, 0:21 GMT)

I have to agree the agent has a role to play in the management of modern sportsmen. With a relatively short careers, it is imperative player income is maximised and every opportunity fully utilised. it is an extremely arduous task for a sportsman to manage the training / playing side and the lucrative financial benefits. This is where the agent / player-manager comes in - taking away the burden of a player having to respond to all the offers, legitimate or not, deal with the negotiation process and agree the best deal for the player - leaving the player to concentrate his energies on playing. Every major sport has to work with agents - so the negative line taken by Sri Lanka Cricket will alienate players as they could potentially be "screwed" by uncompetitive contracts of the Board whilst having to refuse lucrative contracts to play overseas cricket due to clashing schedules. How else would Thilan Samaraweera have earned the contract with Worcestershire were it not for agents ???

Posted by Shajadul on (February 25, 2013, 21:17 GMT)

It's time to limit the role of agents but I agree, agents helps players to concentrate more on games and avoid unnecessary stress.

Posted by   on (February 25, 2013, 20:52 GMT)

I think players should have agents. The last thing you want players to waste their time on is worrying about money and negotiating with the SLC board. Player time would be better spent training, studying the game and strategising for opponents. Plus the SLC has a bad reputation and record when it comes to players payments. Player agents have their place and purpose and the senior players should make sure the board understand. Once again Sanga is spot on off the field and on!

Posted by SL_Boy on (February 25, 2013, 20:35 GMT)

Having agents should be more beneficial for cricketers, also SL cricket does not recognize players union this is not good for players , this manner SL cricket can dictate terms. Now who is going to negotiate players terms … caption, senior players ... no one have the right they will call individually and say this is what you get.

Posted by Bushman on (February 25, 2013, 19:01 GMT)

I agree that issues can be sorted out through discussion and negotiations. However on this issue of agents I for once agree with the SLC. Cricketers may have agents for their 'non cricket' pursuits, sponsorship negotiations etc, but as far as cricket is concerned it has to be directly player and board. SLC on the other hand has to be firm on its priority for Sri Lankan Cricket and not cater to financial benefits and compromise on meeting requirements of other tournaments at the expense of Sri Lankan Cricket's tests and one day plans.

Posted by   on (February 25, 2013, 18:16 GMT)

I am with Sanga on this. Definitely an agent would help a cricketer for sure. Number one thing as he said, so the cricketer can focus on his game. However it must be clear that an agent cannot replace the player on all his dealings with the the board. Therefore there should be well laid down and specific criteria as to how an agent shall serve a cricketer by the SLC. The professional cricketers these days are very busy playing for the country in different formats, touring, practices besides participating in dif T20 tournaments. it is like most other professional sports in the world where agents or managers would be employed. More over the shelf life of a cricketer is much lesser than age 65, 60 or 55 as in most other work. Therefore the cricketers have the right to look after their financial affairs by another party. Mind you they have to deal not only with the home board but other world tournaments organizers and counties etc. as well.

Posted by Karnain on (February 25, 2013, 15:10 GMT)

SLC has not Boycott Agents by all means. Agents have been prevented from dealing with SLC only as SLC itself is going to negotiate financial matters with players directly and the agents can be represent the players elsewhere. So Sanga will not loose the benefits he is gaining from his agents. This is indeed a very good move by SLC. By the way Sanga, we would love to hear more about your health & fitness?

Posted by   on (February 25, 2013, 13:15 GMT)

I believe Sangakkara is one of the best logical players around the world.Bt even i am not satisfied with the role of these agents bla bla bla.If Sanga says these agents help him by giving him self more time to concentrate on game by managing the economical factor of the players, then SLC too has got a chance.Bcs afterwards SLC can manage these factors of the players.Including Advertisements,Playing for foreign deals etc.Then the cricket board can reverse the profit towards them back. I was by the side of sanga all the time.But not this time.SLC, you are doing a great work.Just keep that going. Agents are not a necessary factor.Keep player administration on your hands.Then we can save much money wasted from country by our ow fault Sorry Sanga.We are not with u this time

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