Martin Crowe deserved to break Garry Sobers’ world record: Hashan Tillakaratne

MOUNT ABU: Former Sri Lankan wicket-keeper Hashan Tillakaratne believes that the former New Zealand skipper Martin Crowe deserved the triple hundred and not only that he could have broken Sobers’ world record of 365 runs, the highest individual score in Tests then.

In fact Tillakaratne was instrumental in denying Crowe the triple hundred (New Zealand vs. Sri Lanka at Basin Reserve, Wellington in 1991).

Speaking exclusively over his mobile on Thursday, the 48-year-old Tillakaratne says, “first of all i want to send my condolences to Martin Crowe’s family. He was one of the finest batsman the world has seen.He was a technician. When I was a kid I watched him when he came to Sri Lanka under Jeff Howarth’s captaincy. I went to the SSC to see his batting”.

“In 1990-91 season, I was very fortunate to play against Martin when I toured New Zealand. In the 1st wellington Test match for the first time we were dominating with a lead of 300 plus so we were pretty certain of winning the first Test match outside of Sri Lanka but our dreams were shattered when he scored a magnificent 299”.

“I was keeping wickets. He deserved triple ton but I took the catch off the bowling of Ranatunga. The way he was going I thought he will break Sobers’ record. After the game when I went to shake hands with him he was in tears. He was very upset that he couldnt make milestone”.

“Conditions didnt matter to him. He could play anywhere in any condition. I have seen two players who handled Murali well. One was Lara and the other was Martin (Crowe)”.

“After a few years in 94/95 i met him in Napier i had a chat with him and I told him that we had a similar player to him by the name of Marvan Atapattu”.

“It is a great loss to cricketing world.RIP Martin!”, Tillakaratne signed off.

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