Virender Sehwag has gone hand in hand during Dave Warner's meteoric rise from devastating T20 batsman to being viewed more and more as a very accomplished Test opener. You can understand this too with both sharing the same incendiary batting styles at the top of an order with their 'see ball, hit ball attitudes'
Both sharing in an abundance of audacious shots coupled with an Adonis like power that makes the cricket ball resemble an Exocet missile. Though when sit down and really watch Warner and his batting you start to see less of the Indian Master Blaster Sehwag, and more of a very fine West Indian opener from the 1960's/70 in Roy Fredericks. A batsman that was revered as one of the best counter attackers in the games history, but one equally adept at morphing into a traditional style of opener.
Just reminisce on Frederick dismembering the brutal express fast bowling Aussie duo of Jeff Thomson and Dennis Lillee on what was described as on an incredibly fast WACA pitch. That was like a bed for Fredericks to lie in as his innings of 169 off 145 balls with 27 4's and 1 huge 6 showed. I am old, so remember it like it was yesterday with him being confronted by these two raging Aussie bulls that had murderous intents, but rather than taking a step back he took a step forward to face them. Then not only face them, but truly rip them to ribbons in the most sincere manner. Every shot in the book hit at the most immense poswer from his devastating square of the wicket hooking and cutting coupled with his technically perfect driving that had traditionalists and fans of flash appauding in kind
|Standing Applause From All For Roy Fredericks!|
Does this type of innings ring a bell?
Same venue 27 years on and the class and calibre of the opposition attack was gone as well as the fire in the WACA pitch, but my word the batting massacre remained in Warner's 69 ball hundred. The sheer audacity of his stroke play left you gobmacked with his power hitting dazzling all. The straight sixes he hit including one to bring up his century displayed this, but it also showed the technical excellence so overlooked in his batting. In respect to him hitting a text shot drive that could grace any coaching manual, but just lofted and with such might that it landed 20 rows back into the appreciative crowd.
Warner of course will have the mauler tag attached to him every time he plays, and you can understand this for its a sexy label that benefits all. Meaning $$$$ in Warner's bank account, bums on seats in Test Cricket to watch him, and the recognition of a 10 year star for all to be dazzled by.
Which will be digested in the same manner as one devours Grandma's special dessert treat. Though more and more Warner, like Roy Fredericks will be seen as the complete package as an opener in all forms of the game. Made reality through the ability to adapt and blend between his natural marauding attacking instincts and more defensive styles of play.
We saw the wrecking ball Warner here in Perth, but then we saw an opener of sublime traditional excellence in his epic innings of 123 unbeaten in Hobart. That was played on a very challenging pitch against a very decent pace attack and under immense pressure. It contained much of Warner's flair, but his resoluteness made us have our eyes opened wide in awe of the potential of him.
For, if he can score runs on difficult pitches by applying Zen like application with technical aptitude in coupled with his marauding flair.
You do not have to be Einstein to realise greatness is beckoning at his doorstep.......