Sanga’s integrity undoubtable
Leonard de Alwis is one among the many in Sri Lanka and worldwide had no doubt about the integrity of former captain Kumar Sangakkara, who as a captain along with others had to appear before the CID for the match-fixing allegations of the 2011 World Cup final played in Mumbai.
Alwis was Sangakkara’s principal at Trinity School and College in Kandy. Speaking exclusively over telephone, he said, “I have great admiration for him (Sangakkara) and I continue to respect him as a real gentleman and a true citizen of Sri Lanka.”
“He was a great cricketer during his time and is an ambassador of the game. I am surprised that such an investigation was taking place after nearly ten years.”
In fact, it was Alwis who had advised Sanga’s mother to encourage Sanga to pursue cricket.
“The boy was talented in both cricket and tennis at the school level and his mother was confused. But I advised her to encourage him to pursue cricket,” said De Alwis.
“I saw his cricketing talent during under-13 and under-15 tournaments and was highly impressed. He was bubbling with talent. He had climbed up the ladder from the scratch.”
“Sangakkara now lives in Colombo, but his parents, Kumari and Chokshanada still live in Kandy and meet us often. They always express their gratitude,” said De Alwis, who follows his cricketing progress closely.
Sanga’s father is a lawyer (not practicing now). Sanga too wanted to be in the same profession but luckily cricket is not the loser.
In the meantime, the former sports minister has again offered to provide more evidence to the ICC.