Sangakarra hopeful of England series at home despite serial attacks

Former Sri Lankan captain Kumar Sangakkara is hopeful that Sri Lanka will host England next year despite safety concerns caused by the Easter Sunday terror attacks.

More than 250 people were killed and nearly 500 wounded in a series of attacks claimed by Islamic State on churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on April 21 and it was one of the horrifying day in Sri Lanka’s history.

England are like to play in Colombo and Galle next March, but the attacks have led to fears Sri Lanka could join Pakistan as a no-go area for major international sides.

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However, Kumar Sangakkara, who became the first non-British president of Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), hopes that the series will take place.

“I was in the bus in 2009 when the Sri Lanka team got attacked and I understand the reservations and the security concerns that come after such an incident or even as an observer looking from the outside in.”

“We need a very open conversation with the necessary security aspects that are in place, make sure there are independent assessments done, that the boards connect openly and fully,” he added.

Sangakkara also mentioned that Sri Lanka had managed to host cricket tours, including a World Cup “in very trying circumstances” in the past.

“Since 2015, England have changed their mindset about how they play their cricket and that has revolutionised their performances. It’s a strange kind of shift. When you’re young in Sri Lanka the coaching methods are very English, what you wear, how you conduct yourself… everything about the game is very much old school,” he concluded.

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