Manage episode 282605295 series 2823865
In 1996 Sri Lanka won the World Cup with electrifying, innovative cricket. They brought solace and hope to a deeply troubled nation and joy to all the world’s neutral cricket-lovers. For the next fifteen years or so, players such as Sanath Jayasuriya, Aravinda de Silva, Muttiah Muralitharan, and the brothers-in-arms, Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara, delivered often magical performances which kept their country in the top flight in all forms of the game. But now Sri Lanka is struggling to keep up its standards. The young historian Nicholas Brookes explains why in his forthcoming book An Island’s XI, a masterly study of Sri Lankan cricket since the British first arrived in 1796. He lived there for two years and taught at one of the country’s top cricket schools, St Thomas’s Colombo. He is the guest of Peter Oborne and Richard Heller in their latest cricket-themed podcast.