Who After Dravid And Laxman In Slips?




Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman

Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman

The moment is around the corner when Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman would hang their boots and walk into history. While the batting replacements are making their appearance there still is not a veritable replacement in sight who could replace these two maestros in the slip.

In the Indian cricket of present times, the players who are live wires in the field man the covers and the extra covers area, but the close catching positions are not finding specialists, if one were to talk in the Indian context. Does it owe the manner in which the contours of the game have changed? But for test matches, slip goes out of vogue by the end of fourth or fifth over, instead of attack cricket has become more a game of containment. Fielding position at the slips is a place that signifies the attacking mentality of the team, and if one is not putting slips fielders, then the message indeed goes around the team does not believe in attacking.

Just conjure the situation of the Ashes series, where one finds a whole wall of slip fielders, i.e. five slips and a gully position, but has been a regular fixture in the Indian fielding context? Not likely, it seldom has been observed in the Indian context to be frank.

The slip specialists develop only when the bowlers have great line and length and in the Indian context the lesser said the better. When the blower spreads his ball all around the park, then how a captain would deploy his army around the slips, the containment part, in such a scenario comes into a play in a big way.

So, one thing that the selectors need to strive for is to see that the bowlers adhere to line and length. Once the bowlers adhere to line and length automatically slip fielders would start developing. May be, Cheteshwar Pujara, who is considered to be replacement for Rahul Dravid, and a specialist fielder of slips, could find himself inside the team once Dravid hangs his bat. After all, one specialist fielder of the slips is indeed required.

By: Suman Rai

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