Or he just confused his turbaned Indian spinners. Of course, Murali is the highest wicket taker in the history of test match cricket, and so, I generally tend to put some trust in his words when he makes comments about spinners, especially off-spinners.
When I read the interview comments he made before the start of what was gonna be his last test match, I was mildly surprised to hear that he thought Harbhajan Singh Plaha was the only bowler that has any chance of breaking his record tally of wickets. May be, he saw something that none of us – except for the Plaha family, saw.
I was even more surprised to hear further comments from Murali during the second match at the concrete roads of SSC that he thinks Bishen Singh Bedi is just an ordinary spinner. (So surprised was I, my eyebrows did a Colbert.) It is generally known and accepted especially from fans that saw/heard Bedi bowl and the batsmen that faced him that Bedi was a brilliant practitioner of the art of finger spin. He would constantly change the loop and the pace, vary the angles and lengths and tease the batsmen out. I read somewhere that the cricket ball was like a top in Bedi’s hands. Of course, Bedi has for a very long time, maintained that Murali is actually a Javelin thrower stuck in the wrong sport. So, may be, Murali has some grudges against Bedi?
By making the pre-series statement about Plaha being the only one to have any chance at 800+ wickets, Murali, while trying to sound all genuine, completely messed with his mind. He put the pressure on Plaha. So much so, that Plaha has plahowed and plahadded along for brilliant returns of 2 for 304 at the end of two matches. At this rate, he will only need to play just 444 test matches more to put Murali in the rearview mirror. May be, Murali thought Plaha is the bionic man or the six million dollar man. Whatever the reason, he messes with the minds of Sardarjis and that makes him one funny motherf**ker!