Former Sri Lankan spinner Muttiah Muralitharan reckons Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar had a chink in his batting when it comes to facing the off-spin. Both players had a long rivalry and played several matches against each other.
Both Sachin and Muralitharan dominated cricket in the 1990s and 2000s in their respective field. While Sachin mastered the art of batting and punished every team that he played against, Murali was the wizard of spin bowling and every batsman troubled unpuzzling the mystery of his spin.
Talking to ESPNCricinfo along with Indian opener Aakash Chopra, Muralitharan mentioned he always felt Sachin had a weakness against off-spin bowling.
“For Sachin, there was no fear to bowl because he won’t hurt you. Unlike Sehwag who can hurt you. Because he (Sachin) will protect his wicket, he is a good reader of the ball and he knows the technique,” Muralitharan said.
“I felt in my career, Sachin had a small weakness against off-spin. With leg-spin, he smashes but off-spin somehow he had the difficulty because I got him out so many times. And lots of off-spinners also got him so many times, I have seen it.”
“I don’t know, I never spoke to him regarding this, that’s why ‘you aren’t comfortable with off-spin.’ I felt in my mind he had a little bit of weakness that’s why I got a little bit of advantage compared to other players. Sachin is a difficult player, it’s very hard to get him out,” he added.
“Sehwag is so dangerous, for him we put deep fielders because I know he would go for his chance. He would go for his instincts and he knows ‘On my day I will attack anyone I want’,” he signed off.
Muralitharan ended his career with the most number of wickets in international cricket. On the other hand, Sachin amassed over 33k runs during his 24-year-long career, most by any batsman.