Q&A: Kumar Sangakkara

Friday 7 August

Club President Kumar Sangakkara today hosted a live Q&A on MCC's new twitter channel and answered questions about the Club, his career and the future of cricket. 

Hey sanga what are the most challenging things you’re facing with this position? And how do you overcome it?

One of the challenges we face is to make cricket truly inclusive, especially in the light of Black Lives Matter. MCC, and those affiliated, have a responsibility to live the values that are a part of this wonderful game. We all need to be a part of actionable process.

What is the defined role of MCC in world cricket as it stands today?

MCC are the guardians of the Laws of the game and are a powerful voice to debate & advise relevant issues in the sport. MCC also owns Lord's, a ground that has inspired players across the world and inspired generations upon generations to fall in love with Cricket.

What steps according to you should be taken to grow the game in non-cricketing nations like Germany?

I think associate nations need to be exposed to the right format and find what inspires girls and boys in the sport. T20/T10 cricket could be a way forward for countries like Germany. Basics of really good coaching, facilities & equipment will help the growth.

Kumar Sangakkara Twitter Q&A

Does Sanga prefer keeping or just fielding elsewhere?

That’s a tough question. I was never a great fielder so I preferred the comfort of the gloves. In Tests I had to give up the gloves to give more time to concentrate on my batting and improve. But in shorter versions I definitely preferred keeping wicket.

Your favourite batsman of all time.. 

It was Sir Viv Richards up until Brian Lara came around – since then they shared an equal importance on my list.

Hi Sanga, what inspired u to take up cricket and who is your role model of this game?

Sir Viv Richards and Brian Lara were my batting heroes. I’d say the 1996 Sri Lanka World-Cup winning side inspired me to playing international cricket too.

@suwagath Sir
How did you grow up your leadership skills?

A combination of nurture and nature. For me it was about having a good grounding, having an open mind to learn from others, and setting my own standards.

During your time as a Test wicket-keeper who was the most difficult bowler you found to keep while standing behind stumps? 

Behind the stumps it would be Murali. He was extremely difficult to keep to with his variation and turn, and the weather conditions in Sri Lanka made it a test of both mental and physical fitness. So he would be number one.

You need a player to score a century to win a Test match. Who you choosing Virat, Steve Smith or yourself?

Haha, I’ll go with either Virat or Steve Smith but not myself!

Which fast bowler you find difficult to face?

Wasim Akram, was a nightmare to face. Zaheer Khan I faced many times and was extremely difficult also.

Considering you left on such a high, would you ever consider returning to county cricket?

Haha, definitely not. I will be 43 this year and I might need the aid of a cane to run between the wickets.  I have great memories from my time at Surrey but they will remain just that.

What is MCC future plans for wonens cricket?

MCC has always been a pioneer in trying to develop the women’s game and will continue to do so by providing benchmark games with support from ICC. To have MCC Women’s Day at Lord's, encourages more and more girls to develop through various pathways at the Club.

Do you think cricket will feature in the olympics if so when?

There is definitely a concerted effort to try and have cricket included. It is something that a lot of boards - including MCC - are seeing as an achievable goal.

What are the challenges that awaits Cricket(in a long term basis) during the course of this Pandemic

The rules have changed to accommodate a safe environment for spectators & players. We will have to learn to live with a seasonal rise or if the virus doesn’t disappear, then these implications might be here to stay for the long-term.

How satisfied are you after working as the president of MCC?

The role is very enjoyable, it’s great to be part of such as a historic Club and venue that hosts the best cricket in the world. The real satisfaction is being involved with the innovation and development of the game which MCC has always been a part of.