Friday, December 21, 2001, Chandigarh, India





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Anil Kumble joins the 300-club

Anil Kumble (centre) is congratulated by his team-mates
Anil Kumble (centre) is congratulated by his team-mates after taking his 300th Test wicket during the second day’s play of the third Test between India and England at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore on Thursday.
 — Reuters photo

Bangalore, December 20
After grabbing his 300th Test wicket to become only the fourth spinner in the world to do so, Anil Kumble said he had not set any immediate goal for himself but as long as the hunger was there in him he would continue adding wickets to his kitty.

The 31-year-old leggie said it was too early for him to say if he would surpass the highest Indian wicket-taker ever Kapil Dev who has 434 wickets to his credit. “It is too early to talk on that... but as long as the hunger is there, I will keep on working on adding wickets to my kitty.”

Kumble was frustrated for four sessions before he finally dismissed Matthew Hoggard after tea today to claim his 300th scalp and enter into record books.

Kumble said it was his family’s passion for cricket that initiated him into the game. “Cricket is a passion in my family.... I grew up listening to radio commentary on the feats of our great spin quartet of B. Chandrasekhar, Erapalli Prasanna, Bishan Singh Bedi and S. Venkatraghavan.”

And it was Chandrasekhar who was his cricketing idol. “I was further inspired after attending a coaching camp under Chandrasekhar as a 15-year-old”.

Kumble said the little regret of his not being able to take a wicket on the first day of the Test against England was that his mother could not see him achieve the feat. His mother had specially come to see him bowl yesterday but could not make it today as she fell ill. Kumble, who missed almost a year’s action due to a shoulder injury, said: “Its great to be back after a long absence... It was frustrating to watch matches on television”.

The Karnataka bowler, thrilled to have achieved the feat at his home ground, thanked his teammates for their support and also praised physio Andrew Leipus. “He (Leipus) had worked very hard with me and I thank him for his help”.

Later, addressing a press conference, Kumble said one of his goals was to achieve a series victory abroad for India and the immediate aim of course was to clinch a victory over England in the ongoing series.

“A series victory abroad has eluded India when I have been part of the team. Hopefully we will achieve that soon,” he said. PTI
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