Disclaimer: This post is not to devalue, desrespect or undermine Kumar Sangakkara and his achievements. It is just to support a point about Mahela Jayawardane I have stood by for some time. The fact remains Kumar Sangakkara is and will be for some time the most successful and accomplished batsman Sri Lanka has ever produced.
Although there is next to nothing that we can take from the on going India vs Sri Lanka ODIs, there is an important and somewhat rare feat for Sri Lanka among all the disappointment. How often do we get to see Kumar Sangakkara out-performed by another Sri Lankan batsman? Given Sanga's consistency over the last few years, that is extremely rare. And the reason is indirectly connected to a point I made about Mahela Jayawardane in numerous sites,blogs,comments etc.
In number of attempts to determine who is the best batsman produced by Sri Lanka(fans are probably exhausted by all the back-and-forth stuff) I have stood by the statement:
"…Mahela is the type of batsman who would wake up 9 a.m. and go on to score a century that afternoon without bothering with the nets. On the other hand Sanga is the type of batsman who would wake up at 6 a.m. hit hundread deliveries from the bowling machine in the nets and then go on to score a century that afternoon…"
While I was inspecting hammering Sri Lanka were receiving in the current ODI series I realized what better proof to support my above conclusion about Sanga vs Mahela!?
Incidentally Sri Lanka went through minimum preparation just days before the start of this tour and that DID NOT go down well with Sanga at all, and typically wasn't shy to share his displeasure about lack of time for proper preparation, and on que Sanga did not seem his usual assured self in the middle in any of the three ODIs he played in.
On the other hand Mahela has already ended up as the leading run scorer for Sri Lanka in this series and looks to be in his sublime best.
The reason? Sanga more or less relies on HARD WORK, while Mahela counts on the RAW TALENT and his instincts.
While not undermining Sanga, his achievement and his service to Sri Lanka, it's important to keep in mind that crisis does not present itself with prior notice! and when it does; it's always nice to have bloke who can get straight down to work, right after he get off the bed i.e. Mahela…
Food for thought: Imagine what could've been achieved if Mahela had the work ethic of Sanga!