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Kumar Sangakkara did not achieve true potential, says father Kshema

Kumar Sangakkara’s father also revealed a small family incident, which he says was the reason why the Sri Lanka legend moved on to cricket from tennis, which was his favourite sport in childhood.

Kumar Sangakkara seen with his family

Father and first coach to Sri Lanka legend Kumar Sangakkara, Kshema Sangakkara, expressed to The Indian Express his views on the career of his son, also comparing him to other Sri Lanka legends. In the flood of tributes that have come from all around the world to mark the legend’s retirement from the international stage, his father’s estimation has also struck a lot of people on the social media as damning.

“Kumar could have done better. He too often let bowlers dismiss him rather than them having to get him out. For me, Don Bradman was the ultimate batsman. He scored a century once in every three innings. If you truly consider yourself to be a world-class batsman, you should be able to do that. Kumar did well, don’t get me wrong. But did he achieve his true potential? I don’t think so.

“According to me Mahela Jayawardene had a much better technique, and a much tighter defence. Kumar’s temperament and grit is what ensured he scored more runs and averaged more than Mahela.

On how he watched his son’s batting, he said, “I just knew when he was going to get out. It was like an intuition, I was never wrong.”

Tennis was Sanga’s first sport: Kshema

Kumar Sangakkara’s father also revealed a small family incident, which he says was the reason why the Sri Lanka legend moved on to cricket from tennis, which was his favourite sport in childhood.

“Not many know this, but he was a very good tennis player. Tennis was his first sport. 

“One day (his sister) Saranga beat him though in an inter-family battle of the sexes. That’s it. He never played tennis very seriously again. Cricket became his primary passion right after that defeat. I’m sure he won’t agree with me though.”

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