Mumbai: Kumar Sangakkara has yet to receive the “official proposal” to be the Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to UK.
The 38-year-old former wicketkeeper and left-handed batsman was offered the post by Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena during his farewell Test match which ended on August 24 at the P. Sara Oval in Colombo.
“At present Sangakkara is playing County cricket (for Surrey) in London. The official invitation will be made to him on any day once the new ministers are sworn in on September 4,” Palitha Pelpola, the personal secretary to the President, said over the phone from Colombo.
Sirisena is likely to meet Sangakkara in person and officially extend the offer, it is learnt here. Sangakkara, who was surprised with the offer when it first made to him on August 24, has not made his decision public.
Interestingly, the present acting High Commissioner Dr Channaka Talpahewa is also a keen sportsman. He was Sri Lanka’s first national rowing captain and is also a winner of South Asian Games medals. He holds two national rowing records as well. It could not be confirmed whether the president spoke to him about his likely successor.
In the meantime, speculation was rife in Sri Lanka that, inspired by the Sri Lankan president offering a job to a retired cricketer, British prime minister David Cameron has offered Monty Panesar the post of the British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka. Even Ian Botham’s name came up, according to reports. “The news is untrue,” an official said, however.
If true, it would have been a remarkable step forward for Panesar, who once found himself in hot water after urinating on the bouncers of a night club in England....