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Thread: The new Bradman

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    The new Bradman

    Like the Don, Sehwag bats with an uncluttered mind, has made over 290 three times in tests, and has the best strike rate among high scorers of his generation.

    Ian Chappell

    January 3, 2010



    in a calendar year where there were many fine feats and admirable achievements, virender sehwag's remarkable performance in scoring 284 off 79 overs in a test match day stands out like a peaceful protest. The way he mercilessly flayed the sri lankan attack at the brabourne stadium is further proof that he's the greatest destroyer since the u-boat.

    In an era where over rates are slowing perceptibly, he's scoring quicker than ever. At a time when batsmen like sanath jayasuriya and jonathan trott enact more rituals than a religious cult, sehwag just faces up, taps his bat a couple of times and proceeds to lash the ball to all parts. Where other batsmen rely on visualising techniques, he prefers the tried and tested method of "see the ball, hit the ball".

    Sehwag has often said he doesn't think too much when he's batting. A wise man. After years of speculation about what, apart from his enormous skill, made sir donald bradman so great, i've come to the conclusion that a crucial attribute was his ability to bat with an uncluttered mind. That's not all sehwag has in common with bradman. They are the only batsmen to surpass 290 three times in test cricket. They also comfortably have the best strike rate among the high scorers of their generation. This leads to an interesting thought on batsmanship: Should greater consideration be given to stroke production rather than technique in moulding young batsmen? After all, efficient run-scoring is not just a statistical exercise, it's the first rung on the climb to victory.

    To add further weight to that argument: Despite sehwag's carefree approach, it's amazing how many of his notable achievements surpass those of opening batsmen renowned for their technique. As an opener, sehwag has a higher average than sunil gavaskar. And 75% of sehwag's centuries exceed 150, while sir leonard hutton only achieved that landmark around 50% of the time. This is even more remarkable when you realise there was a time during john wright's term as indian coach that sehwag was criticised for throwing his wicket away once he had got a start. I asked what his response was when the coach eventually felt the need to admonish sehwag and wright said: "viru just shrugged his shoulders as if to say, 'watch my next innings'".

    There can be no argument that bradman had the better technique, which speaks volumes for sehwag standing by the conviction he revealed to wright in his early days. This is an area where a coach can't help a young player; he's either born with sehwag's confidence in his own ability or he's like the bulk of international batsmen and has moments of doubt. When comparing sehwag to his own generation, it's the strike-rate column that shows his true worth to the team.



    Should greater consideration be given to stroke production rather than technique in moulding young batsmen? After all, efficient run-scoring is not just a statistical exercise, it's the first rung on the climb to victory




    he exceeds such renowned new-ball clatterers as matthew hayden and chris gayle by more than 20 runs per 100 balls. Incredibly, he is 16 runs per 100 balls ahead of the eternally belligerent jayasuriya. To score at 81 runs per 100 balls while opening the batting in test cricket is quite remarkable, even in an era where the standard of fast bowling is a little down on the previous decade.

    There's another amazing aspect to sehwag's test-match success. In twenty20 cricket there are a number of openers who are within a faint edge of sehwag's strike-rate. This suggests there are openers who can score quickly for a short period but that only sehwag can prolong a hectic run-rate throughout a long innings, highlighting his amazing confidence in his own ability and the incredible strength of his uncluttered mind.

    To those who attribute much of sehwag's success to scoring heavily on flat indian pitches, there's evidence to the contrary. He averages 50.48 away from india as an opener and has scored seven of his 16 hundreds on foreign soil. His 195 at the mcg in 2003-04 is one of the finest examples of an opener taking on the opposing bowlers on the opening day with gusto and audacious strokeplay.

    Nevertheless, even that tearaway sehwag innings pales into insignificance when compared with his outstanding achievement of 2009 at the brabourne stadium. May he play more innings like it in 2010, and hopefully everybody reading this column has a happy and healthy year.
    I think this is why countries such as India which are blessed with talent put less emphasis on fitness. Is there any point in having such high fitness standards to save 20 runs when you have players who can destory attacks single handedly? Or spin bowlers who can make you crumble?

    It comes back to the point I was making yesterday. As long as you are match fit and a safe catcher, that is all that is required for teams with super stars. Flower has the right approach for England. He has learnt he is working with a team that is low on talent minus KP so in order to get the best results there has to be good fitness to try and save 10-20 runs in the field. A limited team is often more reliant on fitness to make themselves competitive out there on the pitch. This is an area England pride themselves on, but it's not a gift per say.

    Even Greg Chappell once said when questioned about Indian players gym fitness-he said we have players who can score more runs and take more wickets than other teams.

    That is what it is all about.

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    Cricketer Of The Year The Sean's Avatar
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    Clicked on this thread expecting an entertaining read about Norman O'Neill. Disappointed.
    Member of the Twenty20 is Boring Society

    Quote Originally Posted by grecian View Post
    C'mon Man U.
    RIP Craigos

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    International Vice-Captain Monk's Avatar
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    Doug Walters?

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    International Vice-Captain Monk's Avatar
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    And you cannot make 300 runs without being pretty ****ing fit...


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    Cricketer Of The Year The Sean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monk View Post
    Doug Walters?
    Yep, he was the "new Bradman" after O'Neill.

    Neil Harvey and Ian Craig also got burdened with it before him as well, though it always seems to be O'Neill with whom the term is most closely associated.

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    This thread just so much.
    AT-XI
    #J.Hobbs; #L.Hutton; #D.Bradman; #V.Richards; #G.Sobers; #A.Border; #A.Gilchrist; #K.Miller; #I.Khan; #S.Warne; #M.Marshall;

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    International Vice-Captain Monk's Avatar
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    Steve Waugh was referred to as the "New McCabe". Not as glamorous, but still not a slap in the face...

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    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ViruTheBest View Post
    I think this is why countries such as India which are blessed with talent put less emphasis on fitness.
    It's not about emphasis - India simply does not have anything resembling a gym culture. Or hasn't had one until very recently. Mainly has to do with access - fitness gyms were unheard of in India when I was growing up, except in the rich areas of one or two major cities. In my city of over one million people, I don't think there was even one serious gym that I know of. Things are of course changing, but it takes time. The younger guys are better and the next generation after them will be better still. However, it will take a long time for India to catch up with the developed countries. Once they get into the professional system, yes they have access to the gym, but many times that's the first time they've ever been inside of one. You need to start early and make it a habit (all sorts of fitness).
    Quote Originally Posted by KungFu_Kallis View Post
    Peter Siddle top scores in both innings....... Matthew Wade gets out twice in one ball
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    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ViruTheBest
    Is there any point in having such high fitness standards to save 20 runs when you have players who can destory attacks single handedly? Or spin bowlers who can make you crumble?
    Your other points also don't make any sense because India clearly haven't been the best team in the world except for a short period very recently, and even then they were not so dominating (or dominating at all) that you could argue that it wasn't necessary to pay attention to fitness. You can't say the great WI or Australian teams had less skill with the bat or ball than the Indian teams - that's an absolutely ludicrous statement. They had much more skill and they were much fitter.

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    International Vice-Captain Monk's Avatar
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    Bradman was a vegetarian?

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    Cricketer Of The Year Cabinet96's Avatar
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    I don't understand. Are you saying Sehwag is the new Bradman?
    Quote Originally Posted by Flem274* View Post
    This English top three are cornflakes. They're not the most exciting thing out but they're pretty effective. Then the middle order are the sugar. Would be too much on their own but added to the cornflakes they add some much needed interest

    When KP returns he will be the banana..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cabinet96 View Post
    I don't understand. Are you saying Sehwag is the new Bradman?
    Or vegetarians are better at cricket?

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    Hall of Fame Member grecian's Avatar
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    I'm still reeling at England supposedly being a good fielding side.......
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    Cricketer Of The Year Cabinet96's Avatar
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    AWTA. Yuvraj was dropped first ball today.

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