Most of Sri Lanka mourned their team’s loss to India in the World Cup cricket final in Mumbai a week ago. But in a gesture of goodwill and sportsmanship, the country’s opposition chief and former Prime Minister, Ranil Wickeremsinghe, has written to Indian skipper MS Dhoni congratulating him on winning the cup and playing the game in the right spirit.
"As one among the million of enthusiastic supporters of our national cricket team who played the world cup final against you in Mumbai last Saturday, I wish to convey on behalf of our people my sincere congratulations to you and the Indian team on the well deserved victory," Wickremesinghe said in the letter. "I personally greatly enjoyed the two partnerships you anchored with Gautam Gambhi and later with Yuvraj which saw your team through to a close and thrilling finish," the leader of the United National Party (UNP) said with a personal touch.
He said, in the game of cricket more than winning or losing what mattered was how the game was played. "That this was eventually how it turned out must be a matter of the greatest satisfaction to all of us followers of this noble game of cricket, which in its final essence is not about winning or losing but about how one plays the game," Wickremesinghe said.
He added that the manner in which the tournament was conducted in the subcontinent showed that the epicenter of the game was in "our part of the world." "As South Asians, we were all inspired by the fact that three of the four semi-finalists were from the sub-continent."
The opposition chief had kind words for his home team as well. He praised Kumar Sangakkara’s leadership and said the team should start preparing for the 2015 World Cup from now. Not only Wickeremsinghe, the home team was also felicitated by President Mahinda Rajapaksa after their return from India.