Murali Gets Eight Hundred Wickets, Most for a Bowler in Cricket
In a fairytale farewell, Muttiah Muralitharan’s team mates carried him out of the field on their shoulders, after Sri Lanka thrashed the number 1 ranking test cricket team India by ten wickets. Their chief destroyer was Murali himself, claiming eight wickets in the match.
When the match began, Murali needed 8 wickets to reach test cricket figures of magic 800 wickets, which no mortal has ever achieved. Murali nevertheless could not care for that magic number, he told a reporter prior to the match that he was not interested in numbers. He was determined to bow out of the Galee game, come what may, after an illustrious career that spanned two decades.
When the game began on Sunday the wicket seemed so docile that Indian seamers struggled, and their spinners did not fare any better. Sri Lankan opener NT Paranavitana and their skipper KC Sangakkara scored centuries, and they declared their innings at 520 with 8 wickets down.
It was a different story when India batted, they lost their star batsman G Gambhir only on the 2nd ball of the innings, lbw Malinga, at the score 2. When Murali deceived Tendulkar, the greatest batsman of the world, to find the gap to slip a ball though his bat and hit him on the pad to get him out, the score was at 101, with Tendulkar on 8, and that sunk Indian fans’ hearts. Although V Sehwag stayed to score a century, the Indian team folded at 276 and were forced to follow on. Murali took 5 for 63, at an average of 3.7, not the figures of a bowler who is retiring, but the figures of a bowler who is at his prime.
In the 2nd essay more surprise was in store for the Indian fans. G Gambhir was taken behind the wicket on the very 1st ball of the innings, 1 down for 0. Wickets fell in regular intervals, but the master batsman Tendulkar showed again why he is the worlds best.Continued on the next page