Former Sri Lankan skipper Kumar Sangakkara took charge as the president of the prestigious Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) and scripted history as he became the first non-British person to become the president of the body. Kumar Sangakkara's nomination was announced by the outgoing President, Anthony Wreford, at the MCC Annual General Meeting at Lord’s in May this year. "It is a huge honour to be named the next President of MCC and it is a role that I am thoroughly looking forward to. For me, MCC is the greatest cricket club in the world, with its global reach and continued progress for cricket on and off the pitch," Kumar Sangakkara said in an official statement. "The year 2020 is going to be yet another significant one in cricket, especially at Lord's, and I am thrilled that I am going to be able to play a part in supporting its future as President of MCC," he added. Kumar Sangakkara's tenure as MCC President will come to an end on September 30, 2020.
Sangakkara appears twice on the Honours Boards at Lord's, with both innings coming in 2014. He hit 147 in the Test Match against England, and 112 in Sri Lanka's One-Day International victory over the same opposition.
"As MCC looks to broaden both our horizons and international reputation, I'm delighted that Kumar has accepted the invitation, which he did in January this year, to be the next President of MCC. He is an outstanding individual both on and off the field and will make a huge contribution to the Club. In a World Cup and Ashes year he will also have a significant role to play as President Designate," current President of MCC, Anthony Wreford said in an official statement.
The 41-year-old Sangakkara, who scored 12,400 runs in 134 Tests, has a long association with MCC. He played against the Club in 2002, opening the batting for the touring Sri Lankans in a first-class match at Queen's Park, Chesterfield. He also played for MCC against an International XI at Lord's in the 2005 Tsunami Relief Match. He delivered a powerful and memorable MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture in 2011. In 2012, he was awarded Honorary Life Membership of the Club. In the same year, he joined MCC's World Cricket committee and remains an active member. "We are delighted that Kumar is taking up his position today and it is with great thanks to Anthony Wreford for choosing our first international President," MCC Chief Executive and Secretary, Guy Lavender said.
(With PTI inputs)