Muttiah Muralitharan (L) and Ravichandran Ashwin.(Getty/ANI)
Ashwin reacted to Muralitharan’s comment that the Indian spinner can reach 800 wickets in Test cricket.
Ravichandran Ashwin recently went past Harbhajan Singh’s wicket-tally to become India’s third-highest wicket-taker in Test cricket. The off-spinner, currently at 427 wickets in 81 Tests, is only eight short of surpassing legendary former captain Kapil Dev. While Anil Kumble remains India’s highest wicket-taker with 619 dismissals to his name, Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan holds the record (800).
So, can Ashwin go past Muralitharan? The off-spinner speaks about it himself during a YouTube video, where he replies to a fan’s query on the same.
Earlier this year, the legendary former Sri Lankan spinner had said that Ashwin “has a chance” to reach 800 wickets in Test cricket.
“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 had said, as quoted by Telegraph.
Reacting to Muralitharan’s statement through the fan’s question, Ashwin said that the 800-wicket mark is “so far from reach.”
“Firstly, I thank Murali Anna (Muttiah Muralitharan) for such a statement. 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,” Ashwin said.
“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.”
The 35-year-old spinner is part of India’s Test squad for the upcoming tour of South Africa, and will likely be featuring in the first match of the series in Centurion.