5 Indian openers who showed promise before fading away
- India's domestic circuit has struggled to provide quality Test match openers on a consistent basis.
Opening in Test matches is a difficult art. The primary job of an opening batsman is to survive and take the shine off the ball. They should possess good technique and sound temperament to negotiate the overhead conditions.
Team management expects the openers to go out and face the new ball bowled by the fastest opposition bowlers at their freshest. One needs to be courageous to accept the challenge and it is not a job for the chicken-hearted.
There have been legendary openers in cricket like Sunil Gavaskar, Matthew Hayden, Alastair Cook and Gordon Greenidge.
We have seen the plight of Indian openers who have struggled to get going overseas after scoring tons of runs in India during 2016-17. However, there were a few Indian openers in late 90's and early 2000's who showed promise before fading away.
#5 Vikram Rathour
Vikram Rathour was one of the promising openers in India in the 90's. He had a blockbuster season in First Class Cricket which led to his selection in the 1996 England tour. Rathour had previously played a few ODIs for India and even scored a fifty against South Africa in Sharjah right after the 1996 World Cup.
Rathour debuted for India against England in 1996 purely on merit based on his consistent performances in domestic cricket. However, he struggled against the English pace attack and struggled to negotiate the swinging conditions and looked a pale shadow of his own self.
His lack of footwork and adaptability was one of the reasons for his abject failure at the international level. He didn't possess the temperament of Rahul Dravid or Sourav Ganguly who were success stories on that tour, and hence slowly faded away from the international arena.
Rathour had who had a great FC career, also served as a national selector for India.