Sangakkara's stellar season for Surrey

By Kristopher Hinz | September 21, 2016

Photo
Kumar Sangakkara has been in great touch after his retirement from international cricket. © CPL

Sri Lankan batting superstar Kumar Sangakkara proved to be a vital international import for Surrey, passing 1000 runs in 22 innings for the county in England's County Championship this season.

The senior batsman has been a valuable addition for Surrey and has excelled in the four-day first-class competition and the limited-over tournament, having scored a brilliant unbeaten century against Northamptonshire in the quarter-final of the One Day Cup last month.

Surrey found themselves in trouble at 2 /1 when Sangakkara came to the crease early in response to Northants' total of 276 in the crucial quarter-final clash. But the Sri Lankan legend was unfazed by the pressure, scoring 130 not out from 145 deliveries, to guide Surrey to a nail-biting one-wicket win. His knock included 11 fours and two sixes and thrilled the Surrey fans.

Sangakkara also proved key in saving Surrey from embarrassment against low-ranked Hampshire, who faced the prospect of relegation.

Hampshire scored a mammoth 582/9 declared in their first innings in response to Surrey's 329 all out. Sangakkara then top-scored with an unbeaten 84 not out, striking 11 fours in 177 balls and 231 minutes. His knock ensured Surrey were able to score a comfortable 248/3 and get out of trouble with a draw after trailing Hampshire by 253 runs.

Of the nine batsmen to reach the 1000-run mark this season, the Sri Lankan left-hander is the second-oldest at 38. Ahead of him is only Marcus Trescothick at 40 years of age, while the youngest on that list is promising opening batsman for Lancashire Haseeb Hameed, who is just 19. Sangakarra is more than double the opener's age but is still going strong.

The veteran has done a stellar job for Surrey. He averaged nearly 50 this season in the Division-One County Championship tournament and 46.33 in seven innings in the One-Day Cup.

© Island Cricket

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