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Virender, just hang in there!

Virender Sehwag

Virender Sehwag

There are very few batsmen in the world who make a tedious and gruelling task like batting look easy. While there are players like Dravid who, by their elegant shot making and deft touches, strengthen the proposition of batting being a sublime art, people like Virender Sehwag make you get up from your couch and try that shot – the one that just fetched him a boundary – with the boys playing cricket in your locality. Let alone in the limited overs format, even in Test cricket, the rigmarole of accumulating runs just does not make sense to such players.

These players carry an extra incentive for the team they represent; they intimidate the opposition even before a ball is being bowled. This is one of the foremost reasons of their success; with minimal footwork and maximum intent, they hit even the good balls to all corners of the park.

But hand-eye coordination alone does not always see you through; gradually the chinks in the armour catch the human eye and your fallacy is exposed. The bowlers start fancying their chances against you, and you merely fancying your chances more against them does not guarantee victory.

The age of thirty-three is when many batsmen have seen sudden drops in form. Sehwag is the latest casualty with his recent average being the same as his age. The biggest fear that I believe many would share with me is that a lack of technique might hinder his crawl back into the team. When any other batsman is ousted from a team, his immediate reflex action is to go back to the nets and look for the breach in his guard. With Sehwag, there is no point getting the basics right since they never were a part of his artillery.

The pain of watching such fluent a run-getter struggle for a few runs is beyond the elation he once provided with his brilliance. But what a decade of watching cricket has taught me is that a series of abject failures can never hold back the desire to perform in the middle, and that is exactly what we expect from the swashbuckling Indian opener.

May be an extra chance at Mohali would have been less severe on him, but expecting sense from BCCI is utter nonsense. If at all there is something that can keep Sehwag from staging a comeback, it is him alone.

It will be unfair to write him off at this moment as he still has some cricket left in him. May be a blitzkrieg of a knock in the approaching IPL would get him out of this slump. Till then, all we can do it wait.

Virender, just hang in there!

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