Sanga: Two faces

Sangakkara: Two faces

Is he a real “kalu suddah”? A Kandyan Buddhist turned a hypocrite trying to evoke passionate hosannas from our former white colonial rulers, in their own backyard?

Kumar Sangakkara’s current TV commentaries at the cricket World Cup make this naturally eloquent English speaker, who comes from a classy, affluent family background, look like someone who is toffee-nosed, artificial, and forgetful of his own cultural roots.

His “English-ising” of the pure Sinhala names like Thirimanne in his commentaries is aimed solely at winning the hearts of his “suddah” friends. If not, will our colonial masters ever think of rewarding a Sri Lankan – he was named MCC President only recently – if that man is overtly patriotic?

Sangakkara is one of the greatest sporting ambassadors in the entire modern history of Sri Lanka. He is an epitome and a mouthpiece of real Sri Lankan character; its rich, historic culture, its heroism and national unity on world stage. His present TV commentaries are only proof of that. He insulates his essentially Sri Lankan message in British-friendly diction, hence his deliberate “English-ising” of the Sinhalese names like Thirimanne.

Further, his analytical skills on the game are unparalleled to make him a standout commentator among very many greats in the trade. Thus, his capabilities in the com box too, like his batting and captaining, make every Sri Lankan really, really proud.