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Last Updated: Saturday, 11 March 2006, 08:38 GMT
Wicket mark 'special' for Kumble
Kumble celebrates
Kumble dismissed Steve Harmison for wicket number 500
India's Anil Kumble described the moment he became the fifth man to pass 500 Test wickets as "very special".

Kumble followed Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath, Courtney Walsh and Muttiah Muralitharan - who on Friday took his 600th scalp - past the mark.

"It's a great feeling to be able to get to this milestone," he said.

"As only five bowlers in the world have got to 500, it's indeed special. To be the first Indian ever makes it a more special feeling."

He toiled through 29 overs before claiming three wickets in four balls to bowl England out for 300 in Mohali.

"You keep at it and eventually you get your batsmen. On these wickets you have to keep plugging," he said.

"Doubts were created by various people but I never doubted my ability. My team never doubted my ability.

"The main source of inspiration is the belief that I can perform at this level."

England tail-ender Steve Harmison provided Kumble with his 500th scalp when he was lbw to a top-spinner.

Former captain Sourav Ganguly led the plaudits, telling BBC Test Match Special: "He's a phenomenal player for India in both forms of the game.

"He's been a champion, an absolute match-winner; he doesn't give up any surface.

659: Shane Warne (Aus)
600: Muttiah Muralitharan (SL)
542: Glenn McGrath (Aus)
519: Courtney Walsh (WI)
501: Anil Kumble (Ind)

"I'm very happy for him and I hope he carries on and gets past 600.

"He's still got a couple more years and I'm sure he will get a lot more wickets."

Bishen Bedi, who took 266 Test wickets as India's spinner from 1966-79, said: "I am very happy for him. He has made India proud.

"He has shown again and again that a spinner like him can be a great asset for the team."

Former England captain Mike Gatting, who was watching at the ground, said: "He is a very fine bowler and made a huge impact right from the start of his career.

"If he goes on this way, he may well past the 600 mark. He is definitely among the top three spinners in the world now."

Former India fast bowler Madan Lal said Kumble's fitness would be a deciding factor in his final wicket tally.

"If he is able to maintain his fitness, I am sure he will go a long way in serving the team," he added.



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