Australia news July 5, 2012

Muralitharan keen to play in BBL

ESPNcricinfo staff

Muttiah Muralitharan has declared his intention to play in the Big Bash League next season, and the Melbourne Renegades could be the most likely team to win his services. Muralitharan played for Wellington in New Zealand's domestic T20 competition last summer instead of turning out in the BBL but he has said he is keen to take part in the Australian tournament before he retires.

Muralitharan, 40, is currently playing T20 cricket with Gloucestershire and having retired from international cricket, he has become something of a domestic T20 specialist. Already this year he has played for the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the IPL and the Chittagong Kings in the Bangladesh Premier League, and several BBL sides would be interested in signing him to their squad.

"Yes, I'm going to play there next summer," Muralitharan told the Age this week. "It is going to be maybe the last year of mine so I may as well come and enjoy the Big Bash. I am still bowling well."

If Muralitharan does join a BBL side it won't be his first flirtation with Australia's T20 cricket. In 2009, he signed with Victoria for what was then called the Big Bash, but the deal fell through due to Sri Lanka's international commitments.

He told the Age his relationships with Brad Hodge and Andrew McDonald made the Renegades an attractive proposition, and such a move would also set up a cross-town spin rivalry between Muralitharan and the Melbourns Stars' Shane Warne. However, the BBL contracting window does not open until next week, after the end of the contract period for the state sides.

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  • Andrew on July 7, 2012, 2:08 GMT

    @Narjee A - I too hope he is fit for the T20 W/Cup. If he is - & he performs, I can't see any reason why pro-franchises won't have a look at him. He is probably the best pace bowler outside of the Test world.

  • Dummy4 on July 6, 2012, 4:05 GMT

    @Meety- hopefully he will be 100% fit n ready for the world t20. Players like him need to be selected , I just hope big nations such as the BCCI, CA and the ECB provide oppurtunities to such players

  • Andrew on July 6, 2012, 2:45 GMT

    @Narjee Azzimi - I would love to see Hamid Hassan get a gig with any of the T20 franchises around the world. I would however, wish that he'd get a go without having any requirements to pick an Associate player. I think he is a champ, - sad to see he is still injured, getting picked up by a pro-franchise, might help him recover.

  • Chatty on July 6, 2012, 1:39 GMT

    RyanHarrisGreatCricketer Murali is certainly well past his peak. But he is probably still the best spin bowler in the world.

  • shahadat on July 5, 2012, 20:09 GMT

    shane warne-murali--ajmal-swann-shakib al hasan---kumble---mcgill---herath-sunil narine-ajantha mendis----- cant find any more spinners name who has huge impact on cricket

  • Dummy4 on July 5, 2012, 14:14 GMT

    If countrys truelly want cricket to evolve and make grow, we must provide opportunity to the associate nations and provide exposure to them against top nation players. My recormendation would be for each club team there should be a minimum of one associate player playing alongside the other overseas players. For example in the BBL,IPL or SPL a player like hamid hassan from afgahnistan be added in a team, the other team having some one like obrien from ireland . This will allows the minnows to grow and allow cricket to be more exposed to a wider market and can only increase passion of cricket to other countries where they are able to watch their country heroes . for example hamid hassans inclusion will provide a team like renegades morefan base from the Afghan people

  • Dummy4 on July 5, 2012, 13:54 GMT

    Fantastic news for all cricket fans- the greatest bowler in the history of the game is back and hopefully flourishes in the only country where he has struggled. Great test of character and a good performance here may steal the hearts of many Melbourne fans.

  • Andrew on July 5, 2012, 12:02 GMT

    @Abhisek B - it takes a bit of coverage for Murali to play here, firstly for the stick he has copped in the past, but also because his record in this country is underwhelming. Good luck to him.

  • Satish on July 5, 2012, 9:47 GMT

    How great it would be if we can see Murali and Warne in same team :-)

  • Dummy4 on July 5, 2012, 8:23 GMT

    @RyanHarris : Itz just an indication of tym n I think Murali deserves 2 b bracketed in d league f Cricket Legends for his awe-inspiring wicket tekin abilities n goin by his T20 records even after he has retired I would neer dare 2 say dat he is past his peak ...even a half-good Murali is be8r dan all d lead intl spinners lyk Swann, Dhoerty, Ajmal n Ashwin

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