Mumbai: Describing veteran spinner Muttiah Muralitharan as a remarkable personality who is among the friendliest souls, his teammate and former skipper Mahela Jayawardene today said Sri Lankan team would miss him in the dressing room after the World Cup.
"He is a remarkable personality. Sometimes a pain in the dressing room...he tends to think he is better batsman than Sachin (Tendulkar). He knows exactly what is due. He is an amazing character.
"We will really miss him in the dressing room when he says bye. He is one of the guys who keep everyone laughing," said Jayawardene.
The 38-year-old off spinner is all set to bid adieu to his 18-year long international cricketing career after the World Cup final against India here at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday.
The Kandy-Born bowler, who has accounted for a mind-boggling 800 wickets in 133 Tests, the last wicket coming off the last ball he bowled in the longest format of the game, has also taken 534 wickets in 349 ODIs.
During in career he has also been in the middle of controversy for more than once because of his unique bowling action.
"What he has achieved on the field, everyone has seen it. Off the field, he has been person I would like to admire. When I joined the team, he was the first one who took me out for a meal. I hadn`t known him till then. I hadn`t played with him or against him.
"He has done that for the latest guy who has joined the team. He would probably take him first for the meal or a chat.
That is Murali for you," said Jayawardene.
"The annoying part is he is probably the friendliest guy to the opponent teams as well. If you ask the English or Indians, he will be the first one to chat with them. For us, sometimes, it is annoying. But that is what Murali is," Jayawardene added.
Lanka coach Trevor Bayliss also heaped praises on the cricketer, elaborating on the fun-filled atmosphere in the dressing room because of Murali`s presence.
"He is obviously the world`s best but he is a very down to earth character. He takes on any ideas we might have, whether he uses it or not is another thing. But he listens," the Australian-born coach said.
"In the dressing rooms, he is one of the guys who can be a bit of pain, the fun way. He is one of the important cogs in a successful team environment. He makes everyone laugh, sometimes at his expense.
"He is not the best Sri Lankan cricket has produced, but he is pretty close to it. We are hoping to play good cricket and hoping to win the next game (final for him)," Bayliss added.