Sri Lanka News

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Sangakkara thrilled to join 5000 club

Rex Clementine reporting from Wellington

Sangakkara celebrates his century.

Sri Lanka vice-captain Kumar Sangakkara said yesterday that he was thrilled to be the sixth Sri Lankan to score 5000 Test runs. The left-hander, who completed back to back unbeaten hundreds, rescued his team after a bad start with an entertaining 156* on the opening day of the second Test Match here in Wellington.

The exclusive 5000 club features some of the biggest names in Sri Lankan cricket and prior to the left-hander the other Sri Lankans to get there were Arjuna Ranatunga, Aravinda de Silva, Sanath Jayasuriya, Marvan Atapattu and Mahela Jayawardene.

"It’s a nice club to be in. There are some great players in that list and some of my cricket heroes whom I admired as a youngster. It’s a nice feeling and it makes you proud. Hopefully I’ll be able to score more runs for Sri Lanka," he told journalists after yesterday’s play.

His unbeaten hundred in Christchurch and this one took the side out of trouble and Sangakkara said that he was happy to convert starts into big hundreds.

"It feels pretty good. It’s a result of all the hard work I have put in.

Sometime I haven’t converted starts and I have been working with the coaches and it’s really satisfying when that pays off."

While Sangakkara was enjoying batting the rest of the batting with the exception of Chamara Silva failed as five Sri Lankans were out without scoring. "If you get the balls in the right areas it’s going to be difficult. As the day progressed the wicket got settled in and it was easier to bat on," Sangakkara said.

Asked whether his present role in the team, where he plays only as a specialist batsman, has been the factor for big scores, the 29-year-old said that he was happy to do any role for the team.

"I have always enjoyed keeping wickets. Prassana has done a good job. He’s been the most consistent batsman in the ‘A’ team and his presence is like us having an all-rounder. He’s a good keeper as well and gives lot of options for the captain."

Sri Lankans to score 5000 Test runs

Name                  Mat       I          Runs     HS        Ave       100s     50s

S. Jayasuriya      106     180     6760        340      40.72      14          30

A. de Silva             93     159     6361        267      42.97      20         22

M. Jayawardene   84     138     6258        374      48.89      16         29

M. Atapattu           88     152     5330        249      38.90      16         15

A. Ranatunga         93     155     5105        135*   35.69       4          38

K. Sangakkara       64     106      5051       287     49.49      11         22

-The Island-

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December 16, 2006 - Posted by | South Asia, Sports, Sports News & Opinion, World News

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