Murali on the week of his farewell tour of Australia has produced a Top 10 list of best batsman he has ever had the pleasure of bowling out. But not an Australian amongst them.
This has caused much a do about nothing really, maybe this is Murali’s little underhanded dig at the Aussies on his way out or this is a master piece of spin from the master himself to garner a few extra bum’s on seats heading into the series. Murali has always had a love hate relationship with Australians, mainly due to ‘that’ arm action and Daryl Hairs reaction to it in the summer of 1992. With Australia and Sri Lanka both playing for the Warne/ Murali trophy it seems this is a bitter pill to swallow not just for Australians but also for Sri Lankans.
For Murali to dismiss all Australian batsman from his Top 10 makes him look silly in my eyes and shows a lack of disrespect for a period of complete dominance by Steve Waugh’s men as they amassed a unbeatable mentality towards all sides home and away. I’m sure Murali would like to forget the belting of the double century he got from Michael Clarke in the summer of 1995 in Perth or that fact that despite always taking on average 4 wickets a game, he was costly at 36 runs a piece.
More recently in 2006 Ricky Ponting  and Andrew Symonds  between them batted Australia to victory while Murali could only watch bowling 10 over’s for 99runs in the ODI in Sydney . Lastly the memorable ‘lights out’ match in the World Cup at Bridgetown when Adam Gilchrist a player who on 6 occasions scored a 100 or more against Sri Lanka in the new millennium, went on to smash Sri Lanka to all parts of the ground to score 149 to help Australia deliver the One Day World Cup trophy in farcical circumstances, with his country in need of his doosra Murali was only able to throw down 7 over’s for 44 runs and 0 wickets.
As much as I want to believe that Murali sat down and went though his vast memory of thousand deliveries and countless days of cricket to come up with his masterful top ten batsman to face the record wicket holder, some how I can’t believe it was all done on his own and maybe a certain advisor gave him a friendly nudge to give one last slap in the face to Aussies before its too late. Despite the action I have stated on here before that Murali is and will be known as a fine cricketer and one who changed the game in more ways than one.
MUTHIAH MURALIDARAN’S 10 TOP BATSMEN
1. Brian Lara (WI)
2. Mohammad Azharuddin ( India )
3. Sachin Tendulkar ( India )
4. Navjot Sidhu ( India )
5. Salim Malik ( Pakistan )
6. Inzamam-ul-Haq ( Pakistan )
7. Andy Flower ( Zimbabwe )
8. Graham Thorpe ( England )
9. Jon Crawley ( England )
10. Hansie Cronje ( South Africa )