Between VVS Laxman and Eden, between VVS Laxman and us fans.
I’ve been a huge fan of the Fab Four – The God, The Wall, The Prince and The Very Very Special Man. And now add the brave openers Gambhir and Sehwag. If the Prince was still around the batting line-up would be perfect – the Scintillating Six! Each one of them with their unique styles has only given us joy and nothing less.
VVS is the quiet performer among them all. He will come to the crease, get to his hundred in no time, boost the team score and quietly fade away in the background. In the time spent at crease, he would’ve mesmerised us with the magical melody he played. His batting is sheer delight, a sight to savour. Hailing from the land of another graceful player, VVS has pretty much lived up to the expectations he has built up. He has one of the best records against the mighty Aussies and today, he gave SA glimpses of the genius he is.
He makes you fall in love again and again with the array of strokes on display. Extra cover, mid-on, mid-off, square, third man , name the area and he had it covered. Improvisation is his biggest asset – remember that shot of Warne’s legside ball hit to extra cover in 2001. Today, he hit Duminy between cover and mid-off, then shots followed on the on-side and in the mid-off and extra cover region – no fielder moved, not a single one.
His record at Eden is fantastic , a 1000 runs, 4 centuries which includes that memorable record-breaking 281 in 2001. It is his arena, his stage, his region of dominance, he has marked his territory with supreme authority. As my dear friend PK told me yesterday, that no matter where he bats in the line-up; if it is Eden, Laxman will get a century!
He is the perfect team man. See what his presence and fantastic catch to send Kallis back, did to the morale of the team. Always the one to put his hand up when the team is in distress. He is now only playing tests but every time he walks onto the field he gives it all.
Sehwag’s batting makes you go WTF, Gambhir and Dravid’s brings in assurance, Sachin’s is a God’s blessing, and Laxman’s brings that smile to your face which any passerby can notice; making him wonder why you are smiling. Laxman has that charm on us.
But my friend PK summed it to perfection today about VVS’s special batting:
“Every shot of Laxman brings to my mind the adjectives – yummy, delectable, sumptuous. If only I could gorge on all of Laxman’s innings , I would be ready to die of high cholestrol”
I’ve not seen anyone come up with a better description of this man’s batting – yeah let’s relish every bit of it, while it lasts.