As though the World Cup's summit clash doesn't have enough of masala smattered all over it, it even has the added spice to savour of a final battle between two legends of the game - Muttiah Muralitharan, the highest wicket taker in history and Sachin Tendulkar, history's greatest run-getter. The two bulwarks and stalwarts of their respective sides will be sparring in the one-day arena for the very last time against each other, no doubt a lip-smacking prospect for the fans of both countries as especially for the 40,000 strong crowd at Wankhede on that fateful day.
Muttiah Muralitharan has amassed 800 Test wickets and 534 scalps in one-dayers (so far), while Tendulkar has accumulated a total of 32,785 international runs with 99 centuries. The two players are still in the prime of form albeit niggled by injury and will want to end their careers on with a bang when they take to the battlefield one last time, on Saturday, April 2, 2011.
So just how has Sachin stood up against Murali in one-dayers thus far? The two have faced off a total of 46 times while representing thier respective national sides. Murali has dismissed Sachin 5 times altogether with all the outs being from catches by other players. Meanwhile, in those collection of matches, Sachin has scored 5 centuries and 12 half-centuries. Sri Lanka have come out tops 23 times and India just 18 with 5 No Results.
So, while Sachin embarks on another hunt for that elusive 100th ton in one-dayers, will Murali perhaps strive for a final burst of five wickets? Saturday holds the much-anticipated answer...