In a 2009 Test match in Mumbai, Muttiah Muralitharan denied Virender Sehwag the opportunity to become the first and only batsman to hit three triple hundreds in Test cricket by dismissing the Indian opener on 293.
The legendary Sri Lanka spinner recalled Sehwag telling him, after he got out, that it was Rahul Dravid, batting alongside Sehwag, who suggested he takes things with caution at the end of the day, and reach his landmark on the next morning.
However, Sehwag, who had gone ballistic on the previous day, returning with 283 unbeaten runs, got out early next morning to the wizardry spinner, 7 runs short of this third Test triple century.
“I remember he was batting on 290 against us in Mumbai and I think it was Dravid who told him to hang on as he can get to his 300 the next day. The next morning, he tried to tap it but got out caught and bowled and told me ‘I should have never listened to Rahul (Dravid) and instead gone after you’,” Muttiah Muralitharan told ESPNCricinfo.
He was very dangerous. I’ve said this many times: Muttiah Muralitharan
Muttiah Muralitharan, who snapped over 1300 international wickets, said that the sight of Sehwag at the crease was intimidating. He reckons the former Indian opener played with a different mindset than rest, and that’s what made him dangerous.
“Sehwag could understand and read what I was bowling. He says he didn’t read me but what I can say is that he played me in a different manner (than the rest). He was very dangerous. I’ve said this many times.
“Most of the batsmen batting on 98-99 would look to complete the century by taking singles but Sehwag will go for a six. Sehwag didn’t care whether he got a century or not. He just went for his shots,” the former spinner added.
The Delhi-born used to bat at a strike rate of 82.23 in Test cricket, and 104.33 in ODIs. He retired with over 17000 international runs and two World Cups to his name.