Spin bowling legend and former India captain Anil Kumble has revealed he never was sledged by any player during his international career even by the notorious Australian cricketers.

Kumble, who took 956 wickets during his India career, says the reason behind that was because of his friendship with Australia legend Shane Warne. “I have heard that if you are a friend of Shane Warne, then you don’t get sledged. I was his friend, so I didn’t get sledged,” Kumble quipped during a chat with IPL franchise Kings XI Punjab.

While Kumble didn’t fancy bowling against any particular team, he did find it a challenge to bowl against the all-conquering Australia. “(Challenge) Bowling against Australia because during that time, they were probably the best side in international cricket. You wanted to showcase what you could achieve against the best in the business. I took it up as a challenge,” Kumble, who was recently named KXIP coach, said.

He added, “Fortunately for me, I didn’t have to worry too much before a match about bowling against a (Sachin) Tendulkar, (Virender) Sehwag, (Rahul) Dravid, VVS Laxman, Sourav Ganguly. Fortunately, I had all of them in my team.”

While counting Dravid and himself among the serious guys in the dressing room, Kumble said among the funniest teammates during his time were Javagal Srinath, Harbhajan Singh and Vinod Kambli saying they are ‘certainly characters you need in a team.’

Talking about his top moments, Kumble said debuting for India, taking 10 wickets in an innings against Pakistan, scoring his only Test century and retiring as India captain are among his favourites.