Virender Sehwag, nowadays, is just a shadow of himself. He is nowhere near to his best. Though one may say that his dip in form is because of his fitness troubles, but in my opinion, his dip in form is due to another major reason.
Virender Sehwag has often been compared to one of the most destructive batsman ever, Sir Vivian Richards. He, along with Tendulkar, have been Sehwag’s major inspiration during his youth years. No wonder, he has modelled his attacking style of play based on the other two legends.
Yet, Sehwag’s technique had nothing in common with the techniques of the other two. He has been widely criticised for his lack of footwork while playing outside offstump deliveries. Yet, Sehwag had been successful in giving team India good starts, thanks to his attacking mindset, no matter who the bowler is. This is the reason why Sehwag is one of the most feared batsman.
Yet for the past year or two, he has not been at his destructive best.
He has not been able to consistently perform at the international level, failing to give India good starts. He has been getting out frequently to overpitched moving deliveries outside offstump while trying to play the drive and also while playing his cut shot.
Sehwag is facing a similar problem which Sir Viv Richards faced at his end of the career. Richards, even at the final years, tried to play the same attacking style of batting which he used to play, without realising that with growing age, his reflexes and hand-eye co-ordination is slowing down. So, the final days of his career were rather unpleasant for such a great cricketer. Sachin, who was also inspired from Richards’ style of play, was able to recognize his limitations by the time he reached his 30’s. Therefore, the Sachin we are seeing, at least for the past 5-7 years, is very much different from the Sachin of 90’s. He has switched to a rather slower yet efficient mode of getting runs, rather than going after the bowlers each and every ball.
Sehwag must try to realise his limitations at least now. He is no more the young Sehwag, when he could tear apart any bowling attack at will. With his age catching up with him, he should try to improve his older technique, which required minimum footwork and maximum hand-eye co-ordination. We all hope he comes back to his best in some time, rather than just fading away to retirement.