Murali: Test Record Will Be Tough

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Sri Lanka spin bowler Muttiah Muralitharan admits he faces a race against time to take 1,000 Test wickets before retiring.

Sri Lanka spin bowler Muttiah Muralitharan admits he faces a race against time to take 1,000 Test wickets before retiring.
The 34-year-old, who will face Bangladesh in Tuesday's World Cup Group B clash, lies second in the all-time rankings with 674 wickets – 34 behind Australian spinner Shane Warne.
With the Hampshire skipper now retired from international cricket, Muralitharan, who last year became the first ever bowler to take 1,000 international wickets in Test and ODI cricket combined, has targeted Warne's record and still harbours dreams of breaking the magic barrier.
But Muralitharan, who made his Test debut in 1992, believes reaching the landmark will prove far easier said than done.
He said: "It is hard to get to 1,000 wickets. But I will play for at least for another two years.
"It is harder to get wickets in Test cricket. One-day cricket is carnival stuff and wickets come easy."
Sri Lanka could give a recall to fit-again Marvan Atapattu, but the batsman knows he will have his work cut out fighting his way back into Tom Moody's squad after their impressive opening 243-run win over Bermuda.
He said: "I have recovered quite well from my back problem. I would love to open the innings. But Upul Tharanga is performing well and I would love to bat in any position."
Atapattu has warned his side to underestimate Bangladesh at their peril following their surprise five-wicket victory over India.
"Bangladesh's victory over India did not come as a surprise to us. They play the game hard and they deserved to win," he said.
"Both Bangladesh and India are two crucial games for us. Just because India had a bad day does not mean that they can be written off."
And with India requiring a win from their final Group B game to guarantee qualification, fellow batsman Sanath Jayasuriya is cautious his side avoid a repeat of their early ICC Champions Trophy exit in 2004.
He said: "India too is a good team and we will have to play at our best to beat them.
"When we went to the ICC Cup in India we were the favourites to win the cup but sadly came a cropper. Having to play in different pitches and islands here in the West Indies will be a big challenge."

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