Australia fast bowler Mitchell Starc, who beat Saqlain Mushtaq's 19-year record to become the fastest ever to 100 ODI wickets, played down the landmark and described it as "something he could sit back and reflect later".
Starc achieved the feat in his 52nd ODI when he had Dhananjaya de Silva skewing a catch to midwicket off a deceptive slower delivery in Colombo on Sunday. Starc did not concede a boundary and finished with figures of 3 for 32, which laid the foundation for Australia's first win of the Sri Lanka tour.
"I guess it's [being the fastest to 100 ODI wickets] something I could sit back and reflect on later on," Starc said following Australia's three-wicket win. "Quite frankly I'm glad it's finished now, I don't have to hear about it or talk about it anymore. I was just glad I could contribute to a win tonight. I guess it was a scrappy game, and once the series is finished or later down the track I could reflect on."
Starc was Australia's lone bright spot during the 0-3 defeat in the Test series in Sri Lanka, taking 24 wickets at an average and strike rate of 15.16 and 25.80. No other bowler has picked up 20 or more wickets in a Test series in Asia at a better strike rate than Starc's. He generated reverse swing from over the wicket as well as from around the wicket, which affirmed his status as one of the fiercest fast bowlers. Starc said the presence of former South Africa fast bowler Allan Donald as the side's bowling coach was "fantastic".
"I have enjoyed working with AD through this tour," Starc said. Obviously worked with AD in the IPL [with Royal Challengers Bangalore] in the last couple of years and hopefully will in the years to come. Through this tour, he has been fantastic for us, his knowledge of playing in Sri Lanka, talking about reverse swing, it has been fantastic."
Starc also credited Donald's predecessor Craig McDermott for setting him on track for the 2015 World Cup, where he returned 22 wickets at 10.18, the best average in a World Cup for a bowler who took at least 15 wickets. Starc ultimately bagged the Man-of-the-tournament award.
"It [the turnaround in white-ball cricket] was work done before the World Cup with Craig McDermott especially, maybe 12 months prior to the World Cup and tinkering on a few things - my wrist [position] and swinging the ball and a tri-series [against India and England] before the World Cup," he said. "I think everything started to click and it all felt really good. Then obviously the World Cup was a pretty special period for the whole group and for me it was nice just to get the ball in the right areas more often than I probably had in the past. The one little period that will always stand out was the World Cup. That was very special not just for myself but for the whole squad and the staff. That is probably going to be a hard one to top."