DAMBULLA, January 26, 2009 (AFP) – Ace Sri Lankan spinner Muttiah Muralitharan is poised to complete a record bowling double during the one-day series against India starting on Wednesday. The off-spinner is just three wickets short of surpassing former Pakistani paceman Wasim Akram’s world record of 502 one-day scalps, having grabbed 500 in 324 matches so far.
Muralitharan, already the world’s leading bowler in Tests with 769 wickets in 125 matches, will become only the second player after Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar to hold two major cricketing records.
Tendulkar is the top run-getter in both Tests (12,429) and one-day internationals (16,422).
Muralitharan will once again be the focus during the five-match series against India as Sri Lanka pin their hopes on him to avenge their 3-2 defeat against Mahendra Dhoni’s men at home last August.
The off-spinner appeared in good form in a recent series in Pakistan, taking six wickets in three matches which Sri Lanka 2-1.
The spinner said he was focused more on winning matches for his team than the world record.
“The milestones are not that important for me. Winning as a team is far more important. If t