Sehwag – a rare breed

Posted: March 11, 2009 in cricket
Tags: , , ,

The other day I was talking cricket with a senior sports correspondent of a national agency and the topic veered around to Virender Sehwag. He joked that only God knows what makes that guy tick. He doesn’t display much footwork. He just stands there and clobbers the ball. Even the most astute cricketing brains in the country are at a loss to figure out the reason for his amazing success. The Indian think-tank had decided to let him play the way he does, because even they can’t figure him out. Wise move!

After watching the guy playing the last few seasons and especially after seeing him racing towards the 7th fastest century in ODI history, the fastest by an Indian, and his 11th, at Christchurch today, I can’t help agree. And to think I was one of those doubters! My reasoning was that it had become such a competitive game and technology was being used so often to fugure out a batsman or a bowler’s flaws, that international teams would sort out Viru pretty quickly. There are so many examples of such players whose careers have ended that way. For a while, some years ago it really seemed that way, but the reality as we learnt later was different. According to the same sports correspondent, the then coach tried his best to convince Sehwag that he should change his style and was told by the opener in true Jat style not to bother about him – he was fine the way he was! That probably explains why he was dropped from the team.

But I owe an apology to a couple of former colleagues at Hindustan Times, Lucknow for declaring that Viru wouldn’t last more than three years on the international circuit! This was after watching his lack of footwork and poor technique sometime around 2002. It hasn’t changed much since then, but Sehwag has gone from strength to strength and continued to thrash the bowling wherever he has played against all levels of opposition. Obviously, reason and all things that make sense don’t really make any sense when it comes to Sehwag’s batting. So… apologies guys! All things said – for and against – let’s just enjoy this maverick opener’s performance till it lasts! I do believe Sehwag is a rare breed.

  1. Zubin Kabraji says:

    Have you heard of Victor Trumper ? Or was he before your time ?

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