Bangalore, Apr 17: Sri Lankan spin legend Muttiah Muralitharan turned 40 on Tuesday. The offspinner will turn out for Royal Challengers Bangalore on his birthday when they play against Pune Warriors at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium on Tuesday night.
Muralitharan and RCB fans will be hoping that the Sri Lankan's birthday brings luck to himself and the team. RCB need to get back to winning ways after a hat-trick of losses in IPL 5.
So far in IPL 5, Muralitharan has eight wickets in four games and sits at sixth position in the leading wicket-takers in IPL 5 after Monday night's games.
The spin legend, who was the architect of Sri Lanka's numerous successes, has retired from international cricket but continues to play in IPL.
For a 40-year-old, Muralitharan is not doing bad either. In fact, he has been bowling with the same enthusiasm as a youngster. RCB are banking on him to deliver more wins this season as he has done for his country.
Muralitharan's feats on the cricket field are amazing. He is the leading wicket-taker in both Tests and ODIs. His 800-Test wicket record might stand for a very very long time. In his distinguished 133-Test career, he bowled a whopping 44,039 deliveries. He claimed five or more wickets in 67 times and 10 or more scalps on 22 occasions. Bothe these are records.
It was a fairytale ending to his Test career as he dismissed India's Pragyan Ojha for his final Test and 800th wicket. It was in Galle, July 2010, that Muralitharan scaled this summit and hung up his boots.
When Muralitharan is on the field for RCB, you can spot him with the number 800 on his back. That is the same number, of his wickets tally.
The man from Kandy appeared in 350 ODIs, bowling 18,811 balls and capturing 534 wickets, a record.
The affable offspinner might be 40, but he still has the love for the game. Hope RCB and many young spinners benefit from this true legend. Here's wishing Muralitharan, a very Happy Birthday.