‘The weight of 1.2 billion expectations, yeah?’

The Sri Lankan captain Kumar Sangakkara is one of the more studious cricketers going around. The “well-heeled son of a lawyer” lists Salman Rushdie‘s Midnight’s Children as his favourite book and carries heavy tomes in his cricket kit so that he can complete the law degree that he was forced to abandon.

Naturally, he brings all his erudition to the 22-yard strip even when it comes to as mundane a task as giving lip service to the opposition for cause and country, as the South African skipper Shaun Pollock found out in the 2007 World Cup.

External reading: ‘The whole world expects India to win’