Virender Sehwag, one of India’s most unpredictable batsmen in both tests and one-dayers, has finally called it a day on his 37th birthday. Undoubtedly, Sehwag was the most attacking opener in India’s test and ODI team during his era. The right-hand-batsman earned the nickname “Najafgarh ka Sachin” for his sheer resemble to shot selection that Sachin Tendulkar played frequently in those days.
Co-incidentally, when he was playing his maiden test against South Africa at Bloemfontein in 2001, master blaster was at the other end. The duo added much needed 220-run partnership for the fifth wicket when India was languishing at 68 for four at one stage. Though, India lost the match but Sehwag already won million hearts by his knock.
Virender Sehwag scored 8586 runs in 104 tests with 23 tons and 32 fifties at an average of 49 including 2 triple centuries and 40 wickets to his credit as well. Sehwag also piled 8273 runs in One-dayers in 251 ODIs with 15 tons and 38 fifties at an average of 35. He also scalped 96 wickets in the shorter format.
A fairy tale journey: from middle order to India’s top slot
Virender Sehwag played his maiden international match in 1999 but it was only a couple of years later his innings at Bloemfontein made him world famous. Since then he never looked back. Soon, Virender Sehwag became the integral part of Indian cricket team – a squad that can’t be imagined without Sehwag at the opener’s slot.
Sehwag’s maiden ODI ton was remarkable as well. He blazed 100 off 69 balls against New Zealand in 2001 at Colombo heralding the valiant Virender era that continued for the next 16 years in a row. During these years, the world saw him as the most unforgiving batsman who hit every bowler with boundaries and sixes. Virender Sehwag handled openers’ slot exceptionally well bringing an end to India’s long search for a specialist opening batsman at both tests and one-dayers.
Virender Sehwag – the enigma dignified
- Sehwag hit his maiden ton in his very 2nd first-class match in 1998 that helped him become the part of 19 probables list for the World Cup 1999. But he didn’t play any match in it.
- Sehwag was at his best when India jointly won 2002 ICC Champions Trophy with Sri-Lanka scoring 271 runs at an average of 90. He scored 58 and scalped 3 important wickets to help India reach the final of this tournament.
- Virender Sehwag is the only triple century maker from India. He hit record breaking 309 against Pakistan at Multan in 2004 to achieve the feat.
- Whether he was playing at his 40s or even the 90s, Sehwag kept his attacking stance continued against one and all. In one word, he was the most brutal and bravest cricketers India has ever produced.
- Virender Sehwag hit another astonishing knock of 319 against South Africa at Chennai in 2008 becoming only the 3rd player to do so after Lara and Bradman. Gayle also joined the elite list later.
- Sehwag became the 2nd Indian batsman after Tendulkar to hit double century in ODI, when he played a blitzkrieg knock of 219 against West Indies in 2011. However, Rohit Sharma also hit 2 double tons later.
- Virender Sehwag has been the two-time world champions. He was the member of team India in ICC T20 Cricket World Cup 2007 and Cricket World Cup 2011 as well.
Sehwag has been one of the greatest Indian batsman in both formats of the game for a long-long time. His polite behavior and humbleness fascinates as much as his scintillating shots. Thank You Legend! Wishing you all the best and congrats for a wonderful career.