The Brits did leave one good thing behind for us: the cricket culture. A more refined version of our rural ‘gilli-danda’, cricket is to Indians as chai is to Parle-G. Nobody does one without the other.
In a country where cricket was a viral craze long before we understood the word ‘viral’, cricketers are nothing less than God’s own men. Hero-worshipped more than Bollywood celebrities, with an infinitely greater reach and fan-following, every word these men say is carefully observed and obsessed over.
It is infinitely more impressive, then, when your colleagues and men you consider your competition make tributes to you. We collated a bunch of quotes on some our greatest batsmen, bowlers, fielders and of course, wicket-keepers – share if you agree with them!
1. Sachin Tendulkar
Widely considered one of the greatest cricket players in the world, and as the greatest batsman of all time by many – this is what Matthew Hayden had to say about him.
“I’ve seen God. He bats at No. 4 for India in Tests.
2. Rahul Dravid
Mr. Dependable, recipient of the Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan started playing cricket at the age of 12, and went on to become one of the greatest batsmen in the history of cricket. Here’s what Chris Gayle had to say about his formats.
“Dravid could play attacking cricket like me, but I could never play like him.”
3. M S Dhoni
The current captain of the Indian national cricket team, he is the first Indian wicket keeper to complete 4,000 Test runs and the most successful Indian Test captain. That’s probably what motivated Gary Kirsten to say this.
“I would go to war with Dhoni by my side.”
4. Sourav Ganguly
Currently the President of the Cricket Association of Bengal, Dada is considered one of India’s most successful captains in modern times. He has earned 31 ODI Man of the Match awards. When he retired from international cricket, this is what teammate Rahul Dravid had to say.
“On the off-side first there is God, then Sourav Ganguly.”
5. VVS Laxman
The tall, middle-order batsman noted best for his batting against Australia, he is the only Indian to score 1000 runs at a single ground with an average more than 100. Murali Kartik shares his thoughts on this Padma Shri winner.
“If Sachin is called the God of cricket, then you, VVS are the angel we all strive to be.”
6. Virender Sehwag
The aggressive right-handed opening batsman, Virendar is the only batsman in history to have scored 7,500-plus runs in both Tests & ODIs as an opener. Here’s what none other than Sachin had to say about the Arjuna Award winner.
“I have to learn from Sehwag how to play in the nervous 90s.”
7. Virat Kolhi
This firehouse of passion, he is the fastest Indian to have scored 1000 runs in ODIs. Here’s what Sunil Gavaskar has to say about the touted future Captain of the Indian national cricket team.
“To become a good player you need talent. To become a great player you need an attitude like Kohli.”
8. Sachin Tendulkar
And just cause he is the cricketer of the century, here’s another emotional dedication by the fierce Virat Kolhi after India beat Sri Lanka in the 2011 World Cup Finals.
“Tendulkar has carried the burden of the nation for 21 years. It is time we carried him on our shoulders.”
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