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Sri Lanka wait on Murali's fitness

Sri Lanka coach Trevor Bayliss said Muttiah Muralitharan "didn't look great" as the uncertainty over the star off-spinner's fitness to play on in the World Twenty20 deepened in Bridgetown.

cricket Updated: May 08, 2010 12:50 IST
AFP
worldcupt20

Sri Lanka coach Trevor Bayliss said Muttiah Muralitharan "didn't look great" as the uncertainty over the star off-spinner's fitness to play on in the World Twenty20 deepened in Bridgetown.

After conflicting statements this week from officials in Colombo, who said he was coming home with a tournament-ending groin injury, and the team in the Caribbean, Murali played in Sri Lanka's 57-run Super Eights win over hosts the West Indies here at the Kensington Oval yesterday.

He bowled his full quota of four overs but did not take a wicket in a return of none for 26 and after the match Bayliss said of Murali: "He's getting treatment, he's pulled up a bit sore.

"We will just have to wait and see how it comes up tomorrow (Saturday) morning, that will be the real test. At the moment it doesn't look great."

The Australian added: "You take the word of the player. Murali thought that he was right, that he was ready to go and so when a player that of that calibre like Murali says he is right to go, he knows what his body feels like."

Muralitharan suffered the injury during Sri Lanka's tournament-opening loss to New Zealand in Guyana and missed the subsequent victory over Zimbabwe, where his place was taken by fellow off-break bowler Suraj Randiv.

Sri Lanka, last year's losing finalists, continue their quest for a semi-final berth against Australia here on Sunday.

Muralitharan is the most successful bowler in history with a record 792 Test and 512 in one-day internationals.