Sangakkara: Win is for loyal fans and staff
Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara was understandably delighted with his side's World Twenty20 win on Sunday, but said the win was for the fans, and not for himself or Mahela Jayawardene.
Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara was understandably delighted with his side's World Twenty20 win on Sunday, but said the win was for the fans, and not for himself or Mahela Jayawardene, both of whom retired from the format after the game.
The veteran pairing announced their T20 retirements during the tournament, and the other players said before the game that they would be looking to win it for them, but Sangakkara, who made 52 not out as Sri Lanka beat India by six wickets, said the glory belonged to everyone.
A bashful Sangakkara said after the match, covered in celebratory drinks: "It is wonderful that the side wanted to win it for us. But there are 20 million other people to win for. It's not just about me or Mahela.
"It's about an entire squad, everyone who stands with you and behind you. We get noticed because it's our last game, but at the end of the day everyone has played a part."
Sri Lanka were beaten in four tournament finals in the past seven years, including the 2012 edition of this event on home soil, and Sangakkara said it was a relief to get one on the board at last, especially for the loyal fans and staff.
He said: "This is the first time I have been a part of a team that has won a World Cup. It's hard to describe exactly what you feel, but you feel humble. You realise how difficult it is to get here, how much support you need, not just from your team-mates, but from your family, your fans, the support staff.
"You can never do anything alone. You may be the best batsman in the world or the best bowler in the world, but you can't do anything without support. At moments like this you have to look back, reflect and be thankful for that support, because without that you wouldn't be here.
"It's been an amazing journey. It's time to walk away, and to walk away like this is even better."
He added: "I don't think the game owes us, or any player, anything. Our job is to try and play it as best as we can, and walk away hopefully having made a positive impact.
"The game gives us the opportunities and it's up to us to try and take them. We had four opportunities before this, and today we took it. You need a bit of ability, luck, planning, execution. Right place, right time, right game."
Skipper on the day, and for the past three games, Lasith Malinga, didn't agree with the 'luck' part of Sangakkara's assessment, but agreed that the team had the talent to win the tournament, and they executed their plans to perfection.
Malinga said: "I've played over ten years in this team, I know every single player, their ability, what they can do.
"I enjoyed my captaincy in the last three games, I know exactly what particular players have what ability. I used that experience during my captaincy and I was successful.
"Anyone can say anything. Some say winning is luck, some say winning is talent. I really trust that we didn't have luck. We worked hard, we know our ability, we can do that, everyone is talented, that's why we won the match. I don't believe in luck."
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