Tuesday 15 December 2009

Viru: transcendent

Anyone doubting that the new age of batting is here, doubt it no more. Sehwag and his acolyte Dilshan are not just batting differently, they are thinking differently. The mindset of the game has shifted now.

I blogged before on the physical resemblance between Sehwag and the UFC lightweight champion, BJ Penn. Penn fought at the weekend, administering a zen beating to Diego Sanchez. He seemed to float while he did it, barely striking Sanchez [although Diego's face begged to differ]. Penn's nickname is 'the Prodigy'. He comes from a rich family, doesn't fight for money and until recently, barely used to train between bouts. He is an entirely natural fighter - within three years of taking up Jui-Jitsu, he was not only a black belt, but the first non-Brazilian world champion. It makes you wonder how much deeper physical similarities can go.

Sehwag's mind is as great a strength as any he has. He lets it set him free. When he was receiving the man of the match award today, he said, 'I was actually supporting Sri Lanka. When I support India, they lose. So I was supporting Sri Lanka.' Great minds think differently...

NB: As usual Geoffrey Boycott had an interesting take on Viru in his Cricinfo column: 'I am not sure it [Sehwag's batting] is modern; it is more old-fashioned. Wally Hammond made 336 at more than a run a minute for England against New Zealand in Auckland in the 1932-33 series. It took him just 318 minutes to get 336. That is very much how Sehwag plays... He is a rare, special player because he plays with a flowing bat and an uninhibited style. He has an uncluttered mind, which I like. I don't think he gets cluttered up with technique and footwork he just plays in a wonderful instinctive way, which is good. I think on good batting pitches he is a modern-day great.... if it moves around I don't see him getting 300 so easily, but on certain pitches he is a fantastic player'.


Thiru Cumaran said...

This is from he who told that Viru should use his brains when he bats after the 1st test against SL last year in SL! :D

alex said...

Boycott is jealous!. Sehwag is unique. i would not think india would have scored 414 without sehwag. India may have scored close to 300+ at max and SLA would have chased it comfortably.

i do not like to over praise sehwag like cricinfo writers. I think he is more fun to watch. He throw his bat at all the balls outside the off stump.

People always compare sehwag with richards. It is not even close. Viv hit sixers without moving his bat. He has that much power in his biceps. Sehwag has to generate power with his moving/flowing bat. So risk of getting out more.

As people improve technique , there will be many many better batsman with strong mind and also great bowlers to counter that.

Watching sehwag is a pure joy.

Tom Redfern said...

Sehwag's runs counted for little.
This wasn't cricket. Where was the contest between bat and ball? So many runs were scored, it tells all you need to know about the deck. Flat,flat, flat. 800 runs in a day ergo Sehwag's innings was nothing special.
Bah Humbug

The Old Batsman said...

And what was the wicket like when you and young Collins were out there?!

Tom Redfern said...

Collins was dropped six times and wicket would have been poor I reckon. No loam to bind the wicket in dem days. People always talk of uncovered wickets as a key change in cricket but real change in wickets came with the use of loam- I'm told. No idea if this is true but it sounds plausible.

Also the highest score after Collins were extras. Thus everything is small beer after Arthur. Watch Viru's game on cricket online tv.com to see to flat the deck was.

I want to see Sehwag get big runs outside the subcontinent; on a wet dog at Chester le street.Until then he's a subcontinent bully.

Anonymous said...

Players like Sehwag and Dilshan are taking test cricket in wrong direction. I am not really a fan of such players!