Thank God I am Sri Lankan!

GEORGETOWN, Guyana, March 29, 2007 (AFP) – Sri Lanka wicket-keeper Kumara Sangakkara has told India they they can learn a lot about cricket, life and happiness from their island neighbours. Sri Lanka beat India on their way to the World Cup second round Super Eights.

India, meanwhile, crashed out and went home to face the unrelenting fury of fans let down by a team many considered to be potential World Cup winners in the Caribbean.

“I feel sorry for India’s cricketers,” said Sangakkara.

“They’ll now face a torrent of criticism and abuse in the coming weeks. Fanatical fans will no doubt be burning effigies. The huge expectation places their players under enormous pressure. And when that expectation is raised a degree or two, it can easily have a crippling effect.

“In Sri Lanka, the public seem to have a more easy-going perspective. Most Sri Lankans are passionate about sport, especially cricket, but we also seem to understand that sport is sport.

“I am not sure whether that more balanced attitude is the product of two decades of civil war, or merely reflects the more happy-go-lucky style of an island nation.

“The attitude of our fans makes it easier for us