Colombo: Sri Lanka’s batting great Kumar Sangakkara has ended speculation about his future by confirming on Saturday that he will retire during his team’s home series against India in August.
“This is my time to call it a day,” the 37-year-old was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
The left-hander said he will play two of the three Tests against India that are to take place in Sri Lanka in August. The exact dates and venues have not yet been announced.
Sangakkara will also miss the third and final Test of the ongoing series against Pakistan. He had already called time on his international career in the shorter formats, playing his final T20 international in Sri Lanka’s successful World T20 campaign last year and his last One-Day International in the quarter-final of this year’s World Cup.
While Sangakkara bids farewell to the international scene, he will still feature in various domestic competitions around the globe including the Big Bash League in Australia for at least the next season playing for the Hobart Hurricanes.
Sangakkara made his Test debut in 2000 and has an incredible record that includes 12,305 runs from 132 matches, with 38 centuries, 52 fifties and a remarkable average of 58.31.
As a specialist batsman, only Don Bradman (99.94) has a higher average than him. Adding to that, Sangakkara has scored a Test ton every 2.8 games since losing the gloves – unheard of in the modern era.
Against every nation Sangakkara averages more than 43 and has posted triple-figures against every adversary. And it’s that desire for big scores that has made Sangakkara a captain’s eternal headache.
Starting in 2002 with 230 against Pakistan in Lahore, he has amassed 10 double-centuries, of which two exceed the 300 mark, and was also left stranded on 199 at Galle in June 2012.
Home (62.62) or abroad (53.13), Sangakkara’s wrath has been evenly distributed, and in no foreign destination has the ex-captain averaged less than 44. When he was tasked with leading his country on 15 occasions, Sangakkara scored seven centuries at 69.60.