In a historic Test series that saw Pakistan tour India after 12 years, leg-spinner Anil Kumble scripted some history for himself on 7 February, 1999, by becoming only the second bowler after England’s Jim Laker to take all 10 wickets in an innings of a Test.
Nineteen years since momentous day in Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi, it is still etched in the memory of many Indian cricket lovers.
India fell agonisingly short in the first Test of the two match series at MA Chidambaram in Chennai. But after winning the toss and electing to bat first in the second Test, they were bowled out for 252 with off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq scalping a five-wicket haul. Indian spinners – Harbhajan Singh and Kumble – were the chief destroyers as Pakistan folded for 172.
India set Pakistan a target of 420 runs to win after notching 339 in their second innings. The visitors started the chase with openers Saeed Anwar and Shahid Afridi providing a 100-run stand. Kumble first sent Afridi packing followed by Ijaz Ahmed in the same over and that led to the beginning of what eventually ended as a ‘perfect 10’. Subsequently, India dismissed Pakistan for 207, winning the Test by 212 runs and squaring off the series 1-1.
Interestingly, after the leg-spinner had taken nine wickets, Karnataka teammate Javagal Srinath, who bowling from the other end, deliberately bowled wide off the stumps against the last-wicket batting pair of Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis, to help his friend have a chance of completing the record.
Fondly known as Jumbo went on to finish his career as the leading wicket-taker for India with 619 wickets in 132 Tests and third overall after Muttiah Muralidharan (800) and Shane Warne (708).
Kumble's career spanned across two decades that began in 1990 and ended in 2008. Kumble is also widely regarded as greats of the game and hailed as one of the biggest match-winners for India.
Post-retirement Kumble was appointed as India's coach from June 2016 and just before completing a year he stepped down after deeming his relations with Indian captain Virat Kohli 'untenable'.
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