Virender Sehwag is undoubtedly one of the most feared batsmen in the world, irrespective of the format, for his sheer ability to tear away any bowling attack in the world. And when India’s only Test triple centurion decides to cut down on risks, and still scores at a strike-rate over 175, the opposition virtually has no chance.
That’s what Pune Warriors India found out yesterday at the Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium, as Sehwag’s unbeaten 87 led Daredevils to an eight-wicket win with 24 balls to spare. “It’s a good habit to finish games, it’s something I haven’t done a lot. Even if I score a hundred or a sixty, I get out, so I wanted to bat till the end today,” Sehwag said after the match.
The pitch here has not exactly been a batting beauty, but 146 was definitely a below par score, posted by the hosts after electing to bat first. “Many people think Sehwag takes risks, he just goes bang bang, but that’s not quite the case. He has got a method, and I can see what he is thinking and planning at various times,” Daredevils coach Eric Simons had said on the eve of the game. There was definitely a clear method that the Daredevils skipper followed on Tuesday.
During his 48-ball knock, Sehwag went aerial only four times. Three of them went out of the park, and one, which was a full-toss from Murali Kartik, was hit right back over the bowler’s head for four. And if that is not a well-controlled knock, then sample this. Sehwag faced a total of 26 deliveries from the two Pune Warriors India spinners’ — Murali Kartik and Rahul Sharma, and didn't go down the track even once — quite unlike Sehwag. “I was getting boundaries by staying in the crease so there was no need to take unnecessary risks,” was Sehwag’s simple assessment, and explanation for his method.