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Murali to retire from Tests



A LONG SPELL:Muttiah Muralitharan, the most successful wicket-taker, has made up his mind to retire from the longest version of the game.

COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's world record bowler Muttiah Muralitharan will retire from Test cricket after his country's first Test against India later this month, the governing body of the sport said Tuesday.

“Muttiah Muralitharan has decided to retire from Test cricket after the first Test in Galle versus India commencing July 18,” Sri Lanka Cricket said on its website.

Muralitharan, 38, who is affectionately known as Murali, is the most successful bowler in history with a record 792 Test wickets and 515 One-Day International wickets.

Sri Lanka Cricket said he had the blessing of President Mahinda Rajapakse to retire early, although he had previously said he wanted to remain until the 2011 World Cup.

Early retirement

Murali's manager, Kushil Gunasekara, said the star spinner had decided to take early retirement from Test cricket as he could no longer keep up with the demands of the longer form of the game.

“He decided to fast-track his decision because he realised that his body could not take the vigorous kind of physical demands of a five-day match,” Gunasekara said. “The best time to go is when you know that you can't do it the way you did before.

He said Murali had originally wanted to play Test cricket at least till the West Indies tour of Sri Lanka later this year. — AFP

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