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Australia to hire Muttiah Muralitharan as consultant

India TV Sports Desk 18 Jun 2014, 12:18:12 IST
India TV Sports Desk
Sri Lankan legend spinner Muttiah Muralitharan is set to become the team coaching consultant for Australia during their October series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.

The highest Test match wicket-taker of all time told the cricket Aistralia website, "I'm very much excited; I know the Australian team is a very good side, but hopefully I can have a little bit of input to help them do well in the series against Pakistan.

"Those conditions might help spinners and I know a few tricks that might help them on what to do as I have played a lot of matches in those conditions in the UAE and hopefully I can help them a little bit,"
Muralitharan said.

The Australia head coach, Darren Lehmann, said: "Muttiah Muralitharan is a true great of the game and his involvement with the Australian team will bring enormous benefits. He really understands the conditions we'll face and will be able to impart a great amount of knowledge .

"Not only will he help guide our spinners during that tour, but he will also work with our batsmen to help them prepare to play Pakistan's dangerous spin bowlers. As we've shown in recent times we'll bring in dedicated skill-specific coaching consultants to our support staff as and when we see fit.

"That means having more regular support from technical experts to help work on specific areas of performance. Most recently we had Shane Warne join us in South Africa, and throughout the Australian summer we had a range of former Australian players around the team during the Test series to help impart specialist knowledge.

Muralitharan said the Pakistan spinner Saeed Ajmal would be the main threat on the tour.

"Ajmal is a difficult customer for all the best batsmen in the world, but he bowls a little bit similar to me so perhaps if I can bowl to the Australian batsman it might help a little bit and give them some tips," Muralitharan said. "Nathan Lyon has been bowling brilliantly but hopefully I can help him a little bit on how to bowl in these subcontinent conditions, on how to use the conditions and how to set up the field."

Lyon is currently in Sri Lanka working with Muralitharan and spin coach John Davison along with emerging players James Muirhead, Will Bosisto, Clive Rose and Matthew Short.