Sri Lanka’s stand-in skipper Rangana Herath became the most successful left-arm spinner in Test history after taking the wicket of Liton Das on the fifth afternoon of the first Test against Bangladesh at the Galle International Stadium today.
Liton slogged at a flighted delivery on middle stump and was caught off the top edge at cover to give Herath his 363rd Test wicket and move past New Zealand great Daniel Vettori on 362.
Herath reached the landmark much quicker than the former Kiwi skipper. While Vettori’s 362 wickets took 113 Tests and 187 innings of bowling, Herath overtook the mark in only his 79th Test and 144th innings. Vettori averaged 34.36 runs per wicket and took 30 five-wicket hauls and three 10-wicket bags over his 17-year career.
Herath has so far taken 28 five-wicket hauls and seven 10-wicket bags in 17-plus years of international cricket at the impressive average of 28.23.
The top five bowlers in this list reads like a who’s who of left-arm spinners in Test cricket.
Bangladesh’s own Shakib Al Hasan, meanwhile, needs five wickets to break into the list by overtaking Tony Lock (the man bowling at the other end when Jim Laker took all 10 Australian wickets in Old Trafford 1956) of England -- something to look out for in Bangladesh’s 100th Test at the P Sara starting on 15 March.