'I'm not sure if anyone will be able to get 800 wickets'
Former Indian leg spinner Anil Kumble called Sri Lankan off-break bowler Muttiah Muralitharan's feat of claiming 800 wickets in Test cricket on Thursday, as an ''unparalleled'' achievement which would take a long time and uncommon skill to be filliped.
It was an instance of one gentleman complimenting another gentleman since both these bowlers were known for their decent behaviour on and off the ground.
Kumble's comments came at a media interaction held at Bangalore when he said: "It is really amazing that someone like Murali has been able to achieve that. I think it will remain unparalleled. I am not sure if anyone will be able to achieve 800 Test wickets in as many Test matches that he has played. He took 200 more wickets than what I ended up with. It is a great achievement, and I have sent my congratulatory messages to Murali."
Image: Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan shares a laugh with Australia's Shane Warne (right) and Anil Kumble (centre) during an official welcoming ceremony for the team's competing in the 2003 World Cup in Cape Town
'India will be a bit relieved now'
Earlier on Thursday, Muralitharan reached the 800-wicket mark with the final delivery of his Test career, after which he announced his retirement.
However, Murli is expected to continue playing ODIs (One-Day Internationals), including the 2011 World Cup to be staged in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh.
Highlighting the excellence in Muralitharan's craft, which made him a formidable opponent in Cricket, Kumble maintained that he was an inspiration to all the upcoming talents of the sport.
"He is an exceptional bowler. He has got a quality that no one else has...on any surface, he has come on (the scene) and done the job. (Even this time) on the first day, he had to literally take Sri Lanka through and put the pressure on the opponents. All these years, I am sure whenever a team played against Sri Lanka, the one topic of discussion was Murali. From next time onwards, India would be a bit more relieved," Kumble stated.
Image: Muttiah Muralitharan is lifted by his teammates after Sri Lanka's victory over India in the first Test on Thursday
Murali's record will not be broken anytime soon
Muttiah Muralitharan created cricket history on Thursday when he became the first bowler to take 800 Test wickets.
Apart from the 800 wickets in 133 Tests at an average of 22.72, Murali also scored 1261 runs. His highest score was 67 runs.
He made his Test debut on August 8, 1992 against Australia at Colombo and retired at the end of the first Test against India at Galle on July 22, 2010 that was won by Sri Lanka.
Born in hill city of Kandy in Sri Lanka, Muralitharan (38) has also taken 515 wickets in 337 One-Day Internationals, and a further 13 in Twenty20 internationals.
Muttiah's record haul is not expected to be broken anytime soon, as the next highest Test wicket taker is the Australian spinning wizard, Shane Warne, with 708 wickets.
Image: Muttiah Muralitharan