The Best Batsman I Have Watched
Prateek Singh | Date 10/07/14
Now, I have seen Sachin bat in a stadium. I have seen Sangakara, I have seen Gayle.
Who have I watched at close quarters though?
I have seen Roy Weekes, the man can take any ball he chooses and deposit it over long on.
I have seen Dalip, Prabhu, Burt Davis decimate many attacks in a similar way.
I have seen Steven Taylor walk in like he owns the place and own it.
Mittoo, Sunil, Clarence, Ifil have all dominated attacks when it is their day.
The best batsman I have watched at close quarters, without doubt is Chucky aka Sachith Kongahakotuwage.
There is grace, there is power, there is timing, there is defence, there is aggression. Chucky does everything and he does everything well.
Yes, I have seen Chanderpaul bat at close quarters, and you are just mesmerized by his positioning, movement and timing, but I dont consider that fair comparison. Sachin, Chanders, Lara, Kallis, Ponting are modern Gods, not humans.
Chucky is human. You watch him struggle and then you see that one cover drive or that one pull shot that changes everything and he becomes something else. He becomes dominant, the bowlers gave him an opening and he took it. This is not fate anymore, the ball is going where Chuck wants it to go, does not matter who the bowler is.
Spin, pace, I have seen everyone taken apart. The cover drive, the lofted drive, the pull/hook everything comes out.
More than the aggressive strokes, the initial negotiation of deliveries is what impresses the spectator the most. I have seen him play two maidens from the same inswing(outswing for him) bowler and take 20 runs off of him in the next over.
Chucky might not be the hardest hitter of the ball, but he is what batting should be, a build up and a balance and a knowledge of pitch, outfield, conditions and ability.
Chucky battles and then reaps the rewards. The day I see him hit a four in the first over off a good ball, I am scared, as the battling Chucky has not showed up. When I see him battle for a couple of overs and then open up, yup, Chucky is there, I am getting at least a 50, if not a 100.
Yes, I am a fan of those drives where the bat just flows and I love it when a pace bowler is trying to bounce Chucky, because on the inside I know that he will let a couple go and then show the bowler who is boss.
Most of all, Chucky is my favourite batsman to watch, because on the other end, I am seeing superb technique figure out what it needs to do to win the one on one with the bowler and it makes me a better batsman every time I watch it.