Lankan great signed on for Legends Bash

Main Stories, Sports

CRICKET PNG pulled off a coup yesterday when they announced that they had confirmed the participation of Sri Lankan cricket super star Muttiah Muralitharan for their annual Twenty20 Legends Bash in December.
Muralitharan will be part of a group of eight international cricket personalities who have agreed to help promote Cricket PNG’s annual “Don’t drink and drive” awareness which is tied into cricket clinics and matches that the overseas stars take part in.
The other stars are PNG national coaching director Andy Bichel, former Australian Test and one-day spinner Brad Hogg, veteran Tasmanian batsman Michael Di Venuto, Test legends Craig McDermott, Greg Ritchie, Chennai Super Kings coach Steve Rixon and English cricketer Adam Hollioake.
Cricket PNG chief executive offcer Bill Leane said Muralitharan’s involvement was the biggest name in international sports that had so far visited the country. 
The only other major sports star who has visited PNG would perhaps be  former world heavyweight champion Joe Frazier in the 1970s.
Smokin’ Joe stopped over in Port Moresby as part of a promotional tour of the region leading up to his fabled world title match up with Muhammad Ali dubbed the “Thriller in Manila” in the Philipines in 1975.  
“The greatest sports star to ever come to PNG is due to fly in Tuesday  Nov 30,” Leane declared Muralitharan in an email release to the media.
“He’s taken 800 Test wickets making him the greatest wicket taker in the history of the game.”
“Murali”, as he is called by teammates and opponents alike, formed what is perhaps one of spin bowling’s greatest ever rivalries with Australian spin king Shane Warne through out much of the last decade as each tried to out do the other for the mantle of the leading spinner.
Ther 38-year-old is still an integral part of the Sri Lankan Test and one-day sides and will feature for his country this summer in Australia.
Murali and the seven other stars are scheduled to participate in T20 matches in Port Moresby on Dec 4-5.
The eight will also be the guests of honour at a dinner hosted by Cricket PNG.
“The visit will create history in this country
“He will be helping Cricket PNG on World Aids Day with a massive ‘supa’ Clinic.
“He will be speaking at a dinner on the same nigh,” Leane said.
“Murali is the top of the pile, one of world sports’ true greats.”