Spin legend Muttiah Muralitharan holds the record for being Test cricket’s most prolific bowler having taken a whopping 800 wickets during his storied career. The offspinner played 133 Tests, finished with an average of 22.72 and took 67 five-wicket hauls - the most in the format’s history.
While his record is a peak that may never be scaled, Murali feels among the current crop of bowlers, only India spinner Ravichandran Ashwin looks good enough to replicate his feat.
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Ashwin though is grateful to Murali for thinking he’s capable enough to do that but the Indian feels it’s a record that’s ‘too far’ from his reach as of now.
Ashwin, who has 427 wickets from 81 Tests, revealed how the Sri Lankan called him up once when he was injured and told him why is it vital to manage fitness
“Firstly, I thank Murali Anna (Muralitharan) for such a statement," Ashwin said on his YouTube channel. “He has mentioned it to me as well a few times. Once when I was injured he called me up and said listen, I too had a similar injury, so take care of yourself. If you don’t take care of it immediately with full attention, you might find it recurring. So we’ve had a good connect; he is a really nice human being."
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“So if he has said so, I am really thankful, but the goal of 800 is so far from reach. I know all of you have this hope that I do reach that mark, but it is too far. Let’s try to take it one step at a time, one wicket at a time and that is how I am looking at things," he added.
In January this year, in an interview to Telegraph, Murali had had said how Ashwin has a chance to reach 800 Test wickets.
“Ashwin has a chance because he is a great bowler. Other than that, I don’t think any younger bowler coming in will go to 800. Maybe Nathan Lyon is not good enough to reach it. He is close to 400 (396) but he has had to play many, many matches to get there,” Muralitharan was quoted as saying by Telegraph.
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