Murali forecasts success for Herath

24 December 2012 03:48:38 EST

Rangana Herath can pose major problems for Australia at the MCG, says Muttiah Muralitharan.

Rangana Herath is being tipped to cause problems for Australia.

The legendary tweaker believes his Sri Lankan counterpart will find conditions favourable in the Boxing Day Test. And he has backed Herath to win his personal duel with Australia's spinner Nathan Lyon.

Murali reckons Australia are susceptible to left-arm spin and expects Sri Lanka to break their duck on Australian soil after nine losses and two draws in 11 matches.

"If we bat first, make a big score and then the wicket starts turning, Herath is the man to get us a win," Muralitharan said. "If the MCG wicket (is) turning, Australian cricketers don't play left-arm spin well.

"In the history of Australian cricket, they haven't done well (against them), so Herath will be very dangerous."

If we bat first, make a big score and then the wicket starts turning, Herath is the man to get us a win.

Muthia Muralidaran

Herath took 5-95 in the second innings in Hobart, and Muralitharan felt he came out on top against Lyon.

"Australia doesn't have the person to take wickets on a turning wicket," he said.

Muralitharan said he felt the Sri Lankans would have won in Hobart had they attacked Lyon.

"It's harsh to say it because I'm not a batsman and it was hard to play on that up-and-down pitch, but we could (have won had we) tried to go hard and take on the off-spinner, because he was just bowling and nothing much (was) happening," Muralitharan said.

"So if we take on him, make him bowl less, then make the other fast bowlers work hard and get tired and we could take that chance. They should have gone after him.

"That's only my belief. Maybe we'd have won, maybe we've have saved the match or maybe we'd have lost ... but I think you (should) try (to) find out."

Australia are 8/13 to win the second Test, with Sri Lanka priced at 5/1. Michael Clarke is 13/5 to be Australia's top first innings batsman.

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