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Harsh Thakor

Which batsman would you select for an all-time Asian test XI on a bad or untrue wicket?

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These are the batsman I would choose in an Asian all-time test XI if the wicket was broken or the pitch untrue.On a deteriorating pitch with cracks and uneven bounce these would be my ultimate Asian batsman.

1.Vijay Merchant

Proved his prowess on the wet pitches in England in the season of 1936 and 1946 compiling. mind boggling aggregate scores of over 1300 runs..Epitome of technical perfection resembling a surgeon performing an operation.Noone did his gardening better .


2.Virendra Sehwag/Majid Khan

Sehwag's lightning or razor sharp reflexes could overcome any barrier of technical shortcoming.His attacking strokeplay could be the most effective weapon on a wicket with unpredictable bounce.His 201 at Galle in 2011 facing Murlitharan and 84 at Kolkata on a difficult pitch are testimony of this as well as his 158 in 2004 at Madras against Australia.

Like Sehwag Majid posessed limited footwork but still possessed the genius of a magician and surpass even a Barry or Viv Richards on an untrue pitch as he displayed against Glamorgan in 1968 when scoring 156 at Tunbridge Wells.



3.Rahul Dravid

Concentration and determination personified.Would overshadow Tendulkar in a crisis or on bad pitches.His 148 at Leeds in 2002,big partnerships at home and away with VVS Laxman against Australia and back to back fifties in the final test at Kingston in 206 are proof of this.Tendulkar was more correct or flamboyant but it was Rahul who made more subtle adaptation on difficult tracks.






4.Gundappa Vishwanath

In his era was more effective on pitches of uneven bounce than his brother-in -law Sunil Gavaskar.He proved this against West Indies at Madras in 1974-75 and1978-79 on wickets almost as quick as Perth ,where his strokeplay embezzled and won India the game.Vishy also took India out of adversity when scoring match-winning 114 on challenging track at Melbourne in 198081 and 78 and 79 at Dundin in 1975-76 that saved the test.Vishy's wristwork was the idol foil on pitch with cracks who could produce strokes of a magician.



5.Javed Miandad

Not the most technically correct but a master in improvising strokes in accordance to the given conditions or situation.The ultimate battler of his day who niggled the best of bowlers more than anyone.A revelation at Perth in 1978-79 when scoring 135 ,in Bangalore in 1983 or at Trinidad in 1988.



6.VVS Laxman /Mohinder Amarnath

VVS Laxman was the best Asian batsman I have eve seen in a run chase who triggered off and steered India to some of its most famous victories in run chases against Australia in 2010 and Sri Lanka.Ressurected India from the grave to reach pinnacle of glory in famous partnerships with Rahul Dravid against Australia at Kolkata in 2002 and Adelaide in 2003-04.In many ways an incarnate of Vishwanath who could drop his wrists to the best of deliveries and bisect the gaps.I have rarely seen batsman manouvre a ball with such grace as Laxman in adverse going.


Mohinder was not as talented as VVS or as much a match-winner but posessed supreme technical skill and was the ultimate epitome of determination.In West Indies in 1983 when aggregating 593 runs at an average of 66 performed better facing express pace than anyone arguably in history of test cricket.Earlier in Pakistan when scoring 584 runs he tackled Imran at his best better than anyone.I have rarely seen batsman as resolute or rock solid and his 80 and 91 at Barbados in 1983 was the ultimate manifestation of supreme skill of batsmanship facing adversity.





7.Asif Iqbal


Few batsman at no6 played more great innings in a crisis.Significant that Asif turned more games than Zaheer ,Majid or Javed in his day.His 135 at the Oval in 1967,152 n.o at Brisbane and 120 at Sydney as well as his 135 at Kingston in 1977 are an ample illustration .In WSC cricket he was the most successful Pakistani batsman.Asif could also perform the role of a useful stock bowler.




The likes of Sunil Gavaskar,Sachin Tendulkar,,Aravinda de'Silva ,Wasim Raja,Inzamam or Salim Malik just miss out.Virat Kolhi has never been at his best on bad wickets.I strongly feel Gavaskar was troubled on tracks where the ball jumped or bounce uneven .Tendulkar maybe the best batsman ever but still not as resolute or defiant as a Mohinder or Dravid or as crafty as a Vishy or Laxman.

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In my book, top/impactful Asian Test (retired) cricketers in order of test debut: 


Top 3 batsmen (avg/impact)

 

* Gavaskar - avg of 76 in 4th inning outside subcon 

* Sangakkara - phenomenal avg as a specialist batsman

* Sehwag - impactful high SR opener. Bradmanesque in Asia

 

Top 2 ARs 

 

* Mankad - Mankad Test in Eng; 2 100s in Aus. Offered flexibility to batting order + match winner with the ball. Avg difference of around 100 in matches won!

* Imran - brilliant performances overseas 

 

Top 2 bowlers

 

* Wasim 

* Murali


 

1 place for a specialist WK - Engineer, Dhoni, ....


1 slot of a bowler - Waqar, Akthar, Chandra, Kapil, ....


2  slots for other batsmen - Amarnath, Sachin, Dravid, Javed, Inzi, ....

Edited by zen

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