Shane Warne didn't have variety that Muralitharan did: Mahela Jayawardene

Updated: Jul 01, 2020, 11:35 IST | ANI | New Delhi

Murali is the highest wicket-taker in the history of Test cricket and is followed by Australia's Shane Warne (708) and India's Anil Kumble (619).

Mahela Jayawardene
Mahela Jayawardene

Former Sri Lanka skipper Mahela Jayawardene on Tuesday said that Shane Warne did not have the variety that Muttiah Muralitharan did. Jayawardene also said that Murali believed in grinding the batsmen down.

"Murali was a champion bowler, he went about his game differently to others. Warne did not have the variety that Murali did. Murali knew what he was doing and believed in grinding a batsman down. If he had to wait for ten overs to get a batsman out, he will do that," Jayawardene told Sanjay Manjrekar in a videocast hosted by ESPNCricinfo.

"Warne and Murali are two different personalities, Warney is a steady leg-spinner but he probably played much more with the tactical honours of you come and attack me, I will get you out, he probably knew that he did not have the variety that Murali had," he added. Muralitharan played 133 Tests in his career and ended up taking 800 wickets.

He is the highest wicket-taker in the history of Test cricket and is followed by Australia's Shane Warne (708) and India's Anil Kumble (619).

Muralitharan also played 350 ODIs and 12 T20Is in his career and picked up 534 and 13 wickets respectively.

During the interaction with Sanjay Manjrekar, Jayawardene also said that the batting lineups these days are very good and bowling lineups have a difficult job on their hands.

"We are yet to see if the modern-day bowlers hit the numbers that their predecessors did. The present bowlers are probably up against better batting units. If they even do not hit the numbers like their predecessors, it does not mean they are bad bowlers," Jayawardene said.

"If you look at the top ten wicket-takers in modern-day cricket, all of them played during the first half of my career. There was Murali, Warne, McGrath, Kumble, Harbhajan, Akram, Waqar, and Saqlain. Their numbers speak for themselves," he added.

The 43-year-old Jayawardene played 149 Tests, 448 ODIs, and 55 T20Is for Sri Lanka. The right-handed batsman scored 25,957 runs across all formats of the game. Jayawardene called time on his career after the 2015 Cricket World Cup.

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