Thursday, January 29, 2009

Sanath Jayasuriya | Grand old man of cricket is still relishing it

At 40 when most people draw up retirement plans, Sanath Jayasuriya continues to redraw the age limits. At 39 years and 212 days, he cracked a superb century in trying conditions here to become the oldest player to score an ODI ton. Former England opener Geoff Boycott had held the record at 39 years and 51 days when he scored a hundred against Australia at Sydney in 1979.

"Getting old and getting runs on the board is not bad," he smiled when reminded about the age record.

Where the younger members of the side failed, Jayasuriya raised the bar. "I was struggling a bit today because it was very hot outside. I wanted to do bat for the first 10-15 overs and then carry on for a longer period which I did. I always want to play for my country and perform. Sometimes you don't play that well and when you play well you need to get more runs on the board. That's the goal I always think of whenever I get the opportunity.

The senior statesman of the Lankan team was hurt that his team had finished on the losing side. "We need to put more pressure on the Indians. We need to take the catches," he muttered. The southpaw, who went past the 13,000-mark, made light of the achievement saying, "You cannot think of records and play cricket."

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