Cricket South Africa (CSA) Director Graeme Smith, and former Sri Lankan great Kumar Sangakkara were all praises for current BCCI President Sourav Ganguly on a recent Star Sports telecast.
Smith made his debut in 2003 when Ganguly was captaining the Indian cricket team. Also, the two shared the same dressing room while playing for the now-defunct Pune Warriors India in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
However, high-octane battles were fought in the last decade between the MS Dhoni-led Indian team and the Smith-led South African side.
Both Dhoni and Smith also faced off against each other on numerous occasions when Smith was part of Rajasthan Royals (RR), and Dhoni led his beloved CSK franchise.
“I seriously doubt that you probably find anyone in world cricket that didn’t get on with MS. He went about his business. He was calm, he was collected,” said Smith on Cricket Connected, in the presence of Sangakkara and Gautam Gambhir.
Moreover, in Smith’s words, it was his equation with Sourav, which he cherished more. “And again, like Sanga, was to spend a fair amount of time with Dada – in administration, we are having a number of conversations over the telephone. He’s always calm, approachable, always interested in a good conversation, so a lot of respect for both men,” he added.
On the other hand, many classic oriental cricket matches were played between India and Sri Lanka, with Dhoni and Sanga at opposite fronts.
“He (Dhoni) did come home in Colombo for a meal with Yuvraj (Singh) one night. We had a great chat. He was very approachable as a person. I did get to know Dada quite well over the years. I really enjoyed speaking to Dada on everything, Test cricket… playing cricket, captaincy… I think Dada I got to know a lot more intimately,” Sangakkara concluded.