"Washington Sundar batted like a No. 3 or No. 4 batsman" - VVS Laxman

Washington Sundar scored an unbeaten 85 in India
Washington Sundar scored an unbeaten 85 in India's first innings of the Chennai Test
Kartik Iyer
Modified 08 Feb 2021

VVS Laxman has lauded Washington Sundar for batting like a top-order batsman on the fourth day of the first Test against England in Chennai.

Washington Sundar scored an unbeaten 85 to help India reach a score of 337 runs in their first innings. This was on the back of two crucial knocks he played as part of India's Border-Gavaskar Trophy clinching triumph in Brisbane.

During a discussion on Star Sports, VVS Laxman and Ashish Nehra spoke in glowing terms about the southpaw's batsmanship.

While talking about his knock today, Laxman pointed out that Sundar was a beneficiary of some loose deliveries bowled by Dom Bess and Jack Leach.

He, however, added that the 21-year-old did show his prowess with a six and four off James Anderson and Jofra Archer's bowling respectively.

"It was a wonderful knock by Washington Sundar. He was fully prepared the way he batted in Brisbane under pressure and today as well. We know Bess and Leach gave the bad deliveries to him but I remember two shots - the down the ground six and the straight drive, he comes into very good positions," said Laxman.

The former Indian cricketer observed that Washington Sundar's solidity in defense was akin to that of a top-order batsman.

"He uses his feet and the depth of the crease against the spinners but showed great faith on his defense against the fast bowlers when the new ball was taken. It was great to see that and he batted like a No.3 or No.4 batsman and not a No.7 or No.8," added Laxman.

"Washington Sundar's knock shows his mindset" - Ashish Nehra

Washington Sundar had played just 12 first-class matches before making his Test debut
Washington Sundar had played just 12 first-class matches before making his Test debut

Ashish Nehra was of the opinion that Washington Sundar's exploits in his debut Test in Brisbane have given him immense confidence.

"Washington Sundar's knock shows his mindset, how high his confidence is. The way he scored runs in his first match in Brisbane. He played as an opener in the TNPL and at the under-19 World Cup but once you score runs for the first time, your confidence is at a different level. He even left deliveries when Jimmy Anderson came over the stumps. It was not that he was trying to hit every delivery," said Nehra.

The former Indian pacer signed off by stating that Sundar's talent as a batsman was evident when he himself was associated with the Royal Challengers Bangalore as a bowling coach.

"He understands his game very well. I have worked with RCB for some time and there is no lacking in his batting talent. He is accomplished in playing on bouncy tracks against quick bowling as well. He likes playing the fast bowlers and the way he played against spin today, bending down to play cover drives against the spin clearly shows his talent as a batsman," concluded Nehra.

Sundar has given ample proof of his batting prowess in the three knocks he has played in the longest format of the game thus far.

However, he would be keen to improve on the bowling front if he wants to hold on to his spot in the Indian Test team as an all-rounder.

Published 08 Feb 2021
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