Kumar Sangakkara adds firepower to Durham

Durham have been given a huge boost for their next two LV= County Championship matches after announcing the signing of veteran Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara

Mike Egerton/PA Wire Kumar Sangakkara
Kumar Sangakkara

Durham have been given a huge boost for their next two LV= County Championship matches after announcing the signing of veteran Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara on a short-term deal.

The left-hander has scored more than 25,000 runs for his country across all three formats in a distinguished international career, and will move to the reigning county champions for their four-day matches against Yorkshire and Sussex next month.

Sangakkara will be hoping to spend some valuable time at the crease and gain a feel for English conditions before linking up with Sri Lanka ahead of their one-day international and Test series with Alastair Cook’s men this summer.

The 36-year-old, who represented Warwickshire in 2007, said: “I’m really looking forward to returning to county cricket with Durham and I’m immensely grateful for the opportunity”

“I actually made my debut for Warwickshire against Durham back in 2007 – I scored a few runs that day so I’m hoping to make amends this time around.”

Sangakkara is ninth on the list of the leading Test run-scorers of all time with 11,151 at an average of 58.07, and Durham head coach Jon Lewis is delighted to be welcoming a player of such prestige to the Emirates Durham ICG.

Lewis said “I said that if we could pull off this signing it would be a big bonus and it is. To attract a player of Kumar Sangakkara’s quality to Durham is fantastic, and I’ve been really impressed by his eagerness to join us.”

“In his short stay, I’m sure he’ll be a big asset – not just with his performances, but with the example he will show our crop of fine young cricketers”

Former New Zealand international Grant Bradburn has been appointed head coach of Scotland.

The 47-year-old, who performed the same role for New Zealand A in the past year, will be assisted by Craig Wright, who will also take charge of Cricket Scotland’s elite player development programme.

Wright and Durham star Paul Collingwood jointly led Scotland to the 2015 World Cup finals earlier this year after taking over from Pete Steindl on an interim basis.

Bradburn said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to work with players and staff at Cricket Scotland and I am thrilled at the prospect of working with a nation trying so hard to build on recent success.

“As a coach, this presents a great opportunity to add value, by driving continual improvement, building depth with healthy competition for Scottish representation.”

Bradburn will be further assisted by Toby Bailey, the lead fielding coach and performance analyst, and Simon Smith, the strength and conditioning coach.

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