(Photo: Getty Images)
By Henry Shimpton
Tom Curran hailed “great man” Kumar Sangakkara after the Sri Lanka legend became the first to 1,000 Championship runs.
Sangakkara’s scintillating sixth four-day century of the season was the highlight of a wet and frustrating week at Headingley where no play was possible on the final two days.
The retiring 39-year-old hit 180 off 183 balls on days two and three to underpin Surrey’s 516-7 declared which also included Jason Roy’s superb 87 off 91. Sangakkara shared 158 for the seventh wicket with Curran (44) inside 25 overs, with 142 coming in only 19.1 overs at the start of Tuesday’s second day.
He reached 100 off 136 balls and posted 150 off only another 28, hitting four sixes in all.
“It was another masterclass from the great man. He’s been unbelievable, and his record speaks for itself,” said Curran, back on county duty after his first senior England appearances in their T20 series win over South Africa.
“There’s not much more we can say about him. It’s all been said. He’s a great player and a great man, and I was honoured to be out there watching him.
“It was a great experience for me. He makes it look a lot easier than I do. It was real good fun.”
Curran impressed for England, taking five wickets in two matches: “It was a special few days,” he said. “I loved every second of it. But it’s nice to be back with the Surrey boys.”
Roy was also happy to be back in red ball action following a frustrating first half of the summer with the white ball both at the IPL and with England.
He batted at four ahead of Sangakkara, and said: “Sanga said it’s the best for my career to be batting at four for Surrey.
“It was very nice for him to give me some confidence like that. I suppose that helped me go out and enjoy myself.”
Ironically, Yorkshire captain Gary Ballance did not face a ball batting against the pink ball following all the hype surrounding his colourblindness. He left after day two to captain the Lions.
Result: Surrey (516-7d) drew with Yorkshire (27-1)