On 17th Jan 2008, Anil Kumble became the only Indian and overall 3rd bowler after Shane Warne and Muttiah Muralitharan to reach the 600 test wickets milestone in Perth.
Anil Kumble’s 600th victim was Andrew Symonds who was caught at slip by Rahul Dravid, someone who has taken more than 50 catches of Kumble’s bowling during the illustrating career both of them had. It was an important wicket as it stopped the counter-attacking partnership between Symonds and Adam Gilchrist and eventually helped India to win the test match. This test was just after the controversial Sydney test and an immediate win helped Indian team to restore their confidence.
To remember the day let’s revisit some of the key wickets in Anil Kumble’s career.
1st Wicket: Allan Lamb(38) Caught Manjarekar Bowled Kumble
This was during Kumble’s debut test match at Old Trafford, Manchester during India’s 1990 tour of England. This test was memorable for Sachin Tendulkar’s maiden test ton which helped India to save the test match. Batting first, England scored a mountain of runs with three centuries from Graham Gooch, Michael Atherton, and Robin Smith. India played two leg spinners in Kumble and Hirwani, interestingly both were wearing glasses. Kumble’s first wicket was English middle order batsman Alan Lamb and he finished with 3 wickets in the match. There was enough promise shown on the field so that the selectors could keep faith on this unusual leg spinner from Karnataka.
100th Wicket: Martin Crowe(11) Caught Tendulkar Bowled Kumble
Kumble reached his 100th wicket in his home town Bangalore by getting the New Zealand legend Martin Crowe caught by Sachin Tendulkar. By this time Kumble became the leader of the India spin bowling consisted of Kumble himself, Venkatapati Raju, and Rajesh Chauhan. In this test match also Kumble led the way and gave India a comfortable victory by taking 9 wickets in the match.
200th Wicket: Mbangwa(2) Stumped Mongia bowled Kumble
Kumble’s 200th wicket came in a mostly forgettable test match for Indian fans, a test match loss against Zimbabwe in Harare. Although Kumble made his mark on day one as 3rd of his three victims Pommy Mbangwa helped him to reach 200 wicket feat. But India failed to chase a target of 235 in the 4th innings and gave Zimbabwe, one of their most memorable test match victories.
300th Wicket: Matthew Hoggard(1) LBW Kumble
Kumble got his 300th wicket in a rain-affected test match against England. The venue was once again the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore and Kumble got the last wicket of Hoggard to bowl out England for 336. However, day three and four were mostly impacted by rain and a full washout on day five resulted in a drawn test match.
400th Wicket: Simon Katich(81) Bowled Kumble
Kumble returned to his home venue after 3 years and picked his 400th test wicket when he got the wicket of Simon Katich who was batting brilliantly. Although Harbhajan Singh was the biggest star in this match with 11 wickets in a losing cause as Australia romped home by 217 runs. Still, this is memorable for Kumble as he became only the second Indian bowler after Kapil Dev to reach 400 wickets list.
500th Wicket: Steve Harmison(13) Stumped Dhoni Bowled Kumble
Kumble’s 500th wicket came in another Indian venue, Mohali in Chandigarh against England. It was in a winning cause and Kumble ended with 9 wickets in the match. His 4 wickets in the second innings resulted in England getting bundled out for just 181 runs. Kumble’s 500th wicket was England fast bowler Steve Harmison who was stumped by MS Dhoni from behind the wicket.
600th Wicket: Andrew Symonds(66) Caught Dravid Bowled Kumble
It was during 124th test played by Anil Kumble that he achieved this feat. A leg-break caught Symonds’ edge, deflected off Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s glove before going to the safe hands of Rahul Dravid at first slip.
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619th Wicket: Mitchell Johnson(15) Caught & Bowled Kumble
Kumble finished his career with 619 test wicket and his last 3 wickets came during his last test match in Delhi. It was a drawn test match and all 3 of Kumble’s wicket came in the Australian first innings. Australia were 577 for 10 and Kumble took the wickets of Brad Haddin, Brett Lee, and Mitchell Johnson. Johnson was Kumble’s last test wicket. In Australia’s second innings Kumble got 4 out of the 8 overs bowled and failed to take a wicket as his last test match dragged towards a tame draw.