My Thanks to Joe Paiva in Adelaide for this important reference to Sanga;s recent appeal …. one that is in step with the bold move he made in 2011 with his wife Yehali when they chose to visit st. Patrick’s College in what was a reconciliatory political gesture.
Perchance as it happens today, I was listening to the commentaries on the ODI match between England and South Africa taking place at Chester le-Street yesterday -where one of the illustrious batch of commentators was Kumar Sangakkara.
For those who are not familiar with Kumar’s background, note that
- Kumar is the son of Kshema and Kumari Sangakkara
- That his father is a Kandyan with ancestral roots in a lineage originating from one of the lay officials accompanying the Siamese religious entourage that restored the upasampada in the Kingdom of Kandy in 1753/54 in Kirti Sri Rajasonghe’s time.
- That his parents purchased “Engeltina Cottage” from the Hannadige Jeronis Pieris family at some point in the late 20th century and restored it tastefully … enabling me to visit them and capture its ambience in the year 2012.
- That Kumar’s education at Trinity College and his training in cricket saw him enter the ranks of Sri Lankan cricket and perform in consistent and even magical fashion in the years 1999-2012 … so much so that he “won the top prize at the 2012 ICC awards, in addition to the award for Test Cricketer of the Year and the People’s Choice award for the second year running. Later that year he confirmed himself among batting’s modern greats, by becoming the equal fastest man to 10,000 Test runs alongside Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara, with the biggest Test crowd Sri Lanka had ever played for in audience, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground” (details from https://www.espncricinfo.com/player/kumar-sangakkara-50710).
- Moreover, his acumen and personal capacities matched his cricketing prowess in ways that saw him invited to present the annual COWDREY LECTURE sponsored by the MCC at the Lords Cricket ground in 2013: see ………. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PII5DwqWA_4 …. … & ….. thuppahis.com/2011/07/13/kumar-sangakkara’s-sentiments-as-an-ecumenical-asokan-lankan/
I was in Sri Lanka in early 2011 to watch the World Cup cricket matches that were played there in the early months of that year. One side event after this series of events was the visit to St. Patrick College in Jaffna by Kumar Sangakkara in the company of his wife Yehali (whose presence was, in my eyes, highly significant). I still do not have any information on who initiated and promoted this step; but, predictably, Sanga was mobbed by the boys. Both Kumar and the School Principal also addressed the assembly of schoolboys (and I now wish that I had pursued the story and secured the content of both speeches).
Be that as it may, this visit was a move towards rapprochement in the context of the defeat inflicted in the course of 2008/09 on the Tamil Tiger thrust for independence
BIBLIOGRAPHY …. M mostly that within THUPPAHI