06 November 2008

The Long Ganguly Goodbye - Part II

Why is everyone so fkin loathe to acknowledge Ganguly the batsman? All right, so he was not a modern batting great, but the admiration from Roebuck and Hopps is so grudging that Giant Alien Lizards who landed from Mars last night might be tempted to believe that he made a cricket career exclusively from politicking and being a fantastic leader of men and a shrewd (not brilliant though) strategist. He is an all-time ODI great - almost up there with Tendulkar. Absolutely ridiculous that nobody acknowledges his ODI record as a fact that speaks for itself, rather than as one part of a highly succesful opening partnership. Perhaps his Test record does not merit that he share Fab-ness with the other three, but he did tame the best bowlers in the business at different times in his career. Perhaps not consistently enough to justify his talent, but he did justify his place in the strongest middle order of the era for a larger part of 113 Test matches. So fk off.


Soulberry said...

The facting goofuses have so long believed in their own canards that they forget he is a batsman first...with 7000 more test runs than they.

By the way, humour me John, do tell me (and the Lizards) how many bats have knocked seven thousand good, bad or ugly runs, in nearly 150 years of test cricket?

If we believe the goofuses, then ganguly must have played the shytiest teams to have ever taken to the game of cricket, to have scored all those runs as a distraction from politicking.

The goofuses cannot get over the Obama he did on them.

Sajith said...

I agree that the praise given to Saurav is inadequate and grudgingly given. But, is he a great batsman? To me, he is a good batsman and in fact only his return to top form from 2006-2007 to the present day convinces me that he is a fine batsman.
Don't get me wrong. I am as big a fan of Saurav as any out there and there is no one who pleases you as much as Saurav does when playing on the offside. But, seriously is he as great a test batsman as the rest of his batting colleagues. I don't think so. Certainly not over a ten year span.
His one day skills are outstanding. But, as good as Sachin, over 12 years again. Sorry, don't agree and what is with a strike rate of 73 for an opener?
He is good, one of India's finest. But, he certainly is not one of the world's best test batsmen during the period 1996-2008.

Khare said...

Ganguly's contribution as a captain and ruffler of feathers has always been stressed on more than his stellar contribution as a batsman, but there are good reasons for that.

Before his rotten two year loss of form preceding his ignonimous exit from the team, Ganguly the timer through the off side and the butcher of slow left armers, usually took precedence as a talking point. However, during those two years,(sorry i have no stats to back this up, just memory) his form was so poor that he was virtually in the team because of his inspired captaincy.

It was probably as much of a curse as a blessing. Had it been anyone else, they would have promptly been dropped, recovered themselves, and made a comeback on pure cricketing terms. Dada had to wade through severe allegations ,criticism and name tarnishing to make his comeback - also probably a reflection on how much his poor batting over that period had gotten on all concerned nerves. While it may be argued that he should never have been cut so much slack as a batsman, he didnt make use of the long rope handed to him, and ultimately hung himself. It takes more than half a career of fine batting and a creditable comeback to be regarded as an all time batting great in India, especially when your peers are Tendulkar, etc.

The point is this - Ganguly, for better or worst, had been typecast as the leader of the pack well before greg chappell came on the scene. And that should not be regarded so much an ignorance of his batting prowess as a recognition of how he was better than the rest. Silken batsmen India had galore, but an inspirational leader of this stature hadnt been around since the days of Kapil Dev. He did, in fact, fill the most gaping void in the Indian cricket scenario - one that niether Tendulkar nor Dravid were able to do in their stints as captains. I dont think it is a disregarding of his fine batting record, but more a recognition of how he was clearly head and shoulders over the rest.

Anil Singh said...

Nice write-up Sajith;

Every word you wrote seems true... brilliant.

Just to add, he's indeed one of the best Test batsmen as well -- A mere glance at his average in the matches India won, is testimony to the fact.

Poshin_david said...

I also wrote about him.............sad he got a duck in his last innigs.

visit my new post on two legands of cricket at
looking forward for your thoughts.

John said...

Soulberry, still remember your analysis about how Dada would attract the fire towards himself. You think Dravid owes Dada ten thousand odd thank-you notes?

Sajith - true.

Uday, hmmm... I definitely think there is some condescension happening. The tone is definitely one of: Ganguly... hmm... good captain, but he was like Brearly wasn't he - if he weren't captain,would he have been in the team for over 100 Tests?

Correct Bisht.

Q said...

They just love to hate him and ridicule him... no one got under their skin - i mean the English and the Aussies - the way Ganguly did.

Thats one reason to demean him.

Another is the fact that he was such a good captain that it outshone his batting skills. Whenever u think of Ganguly, u first think abt his captaincy and then move on to the batting.

The final reason is that, despite him doing amazingly well with the bat, Sachin and Dravid always did better. And at times so did Laxman.

So despite the fact that he is once of the best ODI batsmen to play the game and an outstanding test batsman as well, he will always be remembered for things other than his batting...

Q said...

Oh and I gave reasons as to why his batting may not be remembered.. there r way too many to think about why other things would be remembered more...