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  1. #1
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    How great was Viv Richards in Test cricket and where would he rank?

    Without doubt Viv was arguably or probably he best O.D.I.batsmen ever .However in test cricket many do not rate him as highly and rank the likes of Tendulkar,lara or Gavaskar ahead.They feel Viv was lucky not to combat the great pace quartet of his own team.

    Significantly Viv was on top in what was arguably the most competitive era ever in the history of test cricket with batting and pace bowling standards at their supreme zenith.To me Viv faced the greatest bowlers be it Lillee,Thomson.,Imran ,Hadlee,Botham,Kapil Dev,Bob Willis,Abdula Qadir Chandrashekar etc.He also acumulated runs at a phenomenal strike rate against the best bowlers.In the era of 1976-81 including the Wsc supertests Viv performed better than Sobers,Lara or Tendulkar.In 1976 in England he score 829 runs at 118.42 and in Kerry Packer supertests in 1977-78 scored 862 run sat 86.2 including averaging 11 for the world xi.In Australia in 1979-80 he averaged 96.50.He averaged 85 in a home series v England and over 70 in Pakistan in 1980 in aditio to averaging 63+ in England in 1980.However more than the averages it was the manner he executed those runs.No batsmen had such a cavalier style or was ever as imperious.Viv simply held a cricket bat like a sword making the impact of a bulldozer when batting.Not for nothing did Dennis Lillee or Imran Khan rate him the greatest batsmen they ever bowled to or even Bob Willis and Ian Botham and later Wasim Akram.Viv won 64 votes for an all-time test xi selected by great cricketers of the past.Viv could change the complexion of a test match more than any cricketer of his time and more than even Tendulkar Sobers or Lara.He wa snot as artistic as Lara or as technically complete as Tendulkar but he could decimate or intimidate opposition more than any batsmen ever.Statistically in his time Gavaskar or Greg Chappell may have been better but they did not poses Viv's aura .Viv was master of the hook shot and thus would have played hiw own team's bowlers better than Greg or Sunny and later Sachin and Lara.Viv took domination of an opponent to it's supreme zeniith in sport,let alone cricket and strode like an emperor on a cricket field.


    Viv was not sufficiently tested in a crisis but it is significant that after his retirement West Indian cricket went into a significant decline.What may he said that he became relatively inconsistent after 1982.Neverthless it was Viv's presence in the team that placed them on the top of the mantle for long upto 1991 like in England in 1984 and 88and in Australia in 1985 and 89.Arguably in test cricket Sobers,Lara and Tendulkar may get the nod because of playing for considerably weaker teams..Lara and Tendulkar faced greater pressure and responsibility.Tendulkar's considerably longer tenure at the top and Lara's single-handedly carrying the burden of a weak team's responsibilty on his shoulder would give them that marginal edge.Viv has not emulated Lara's frequency of accumulating mammoth scores or his percentage of average score of the team nor his prowess against spin.Viv pulverized opposition but Lara was mercurial for an even longer period.Overall Sobesr and Tendulkar were more consistent in their careers and better players of spin.Against pure pace Viv would still be head and shoulders above anyone.Also never forget Viv negotiated Lillee,Imran and Thomson without wearing a helmet and unlike Sachin and Lara batted at one down.


    Assesing all factors in pure test cricket in my rankings tentatively Bradman,Hobbs,Lara,Tendulkar and Sobers may just rate ahead with the last 3 named just a whisker ahead.

    Tentative rankings of mine in test cricket.
    1.Bradman
    2.Hobbs
    3.Lara
    4.Tendulkar
    5.Sobers
    6.Viv Richards
    7. Hammond
    8. Gavaskar
    9. Hutton
    10.Barry Richards
    11.GregChappell
    12.Headley






    Statistics taken from S,Rajesh

    Viv Richards in Tests Matches Innings Runs Average 100s 50s
    Overall 121 182 8540 50.23 24 45
    1974-1980 40 63 3629 60.48 11 16
    1981-1988 62 89 3933 47.38 12 19
    1989- 1991 19 30 978 36.22 1 10


    Viv Richards in World Series Cricket Matches Innings Runs Average 100 50
    14 25 1281 58.23 4 4
    Richards' best years were between 1976 and 1988. In 92 Tests during this period he scored 22 hundreds and was the only batsman to average more than 55 (among those who scored more than 4000). That was an era when several all-time greats were around - Greg Chappell, Allan Border, Sunil Gavaskar and Javed Miandad are all listed in the table below - but Richards' average was marginally higher than theirs (though he obviously didn't have to face his own bowlers, who were easily the most fearsome attack during that period). He averaged more than 50 in 13 out of the 23 series he played during this period.



    Performance of top batsmen in Tests between 1976 and 1988 (Qual: 4000 runs) Batsman Matches Innings Runs Average 100 50
    Viv Richards 92 135 7091 55.39 22 34
    Greg Chappell 50 87 4233 54.97 13 18
    Javed Miandad 95 146 7033 54.94 19 35
    Allan Border 100 175 7670 52.17 23 35
    Sunil Gavaskar 108 180 8655 51.51 29 36
    Gordon Greenidge 83 139 6025 48.58 14 30

    The table below summarises Richards' career series averages. Of the 29 series he played, 14 times he averaged more than 50, and less than 30 on just seven occasions, most of them coming either during the early years or at the end.

    Viv Richards' series averages Total no. of series Ave > 70 Ave between 50-70 Ave between 40-50 Ave between 30-40 Ave < 30
    29 5 9 3 5 7

    Of the 24 Test hundreds he scored, 12 were in wins. Between 1974 and 1991, which is when Richards played his 121 Tests, only Greenidge scored more centuries in wins. Richards also averaged nearly 54 with six centuries in away wins. Unlike some batsmen who struggle to score in the last innings of Tests, his stats were remarkably consistent over the four innings of a match: his average in the first innings of matches was 53, while his average in the fourth innings was nearly 48, which represents one of the lowest variations among top batsmen. (Click here for his career summary.)

    Richards saved his best for England, against whom he scored 2869 runs at an average of over 62 with eight centuries. Among those who've scored at least 2000 runs against England, only Don Bradman has a higher average. Richards also leads the list of batsmen with the mosthundreds against India - he added seven more to the century he scored in his second Test. His most destructive knock against them, though, was arguably in Kingston in 1983, when he scored a rapid 61 off 36 balls to lead West Indies to an unlikely win; his fifty came off just 32 balls in that innings.

    Richards batted at various positions during his career but was at his best at the pivotal No. 3 spot. Of all the batsmen who've played a minimum of 50 innings in that position, only Bradman and Wally Hammond have a higher average.

    Best Test batsmen at No. 3 (Qual: 50 innings) Batsman Matches Innings Runs Average 100s 50s
    Don Bradman 40 56 5078 103.63 20 10
    Walter Hammond 37 52 3440 74.78 14 4
    Viv Richards 45 59 3508 61.54 12 14
    Last edited by hadi123; 30th August 2017 at 00:17.

  2. #2
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    Best I ever saw, though Lara was close.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    Best I ever saw, though Lara was close.
    In only tests ahead of Lara and Tendulkar or Sobers ?

  4. #4
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    Significantly Viv was on top in what was arguably the most competitive era ever in the history of test cricket with batting and pace bowling standards at their supreme zenith.To me Viv faced the greatest bowlers be it Lillee,Thomson.,Imran ,Hadlee,Botham,Kapil Dev,Bob Willis,Abdula Qadir Chandrashekar etc.
    Here is a better and bigger list(Guess who played against them all):
    1. McGrath
    2. Warne
    3. Gillespie
    4. Steyn
    5. Donald
    6. Pollock
    7. Wasim
    8. Waqar
    9. Akhtar
    10. Saqlain
    11. Ambrose
    12. Walsh
    13. Bishop
    14. Bond
    15. Vettori
    16. Muralitharan
    17. Flintoff
    18. Anderson
    19. Swann
    20. Broad


    Bowlers I left out : Imran, Hadlee, Qadir, Harmison, BLee, Fleming, McDermott, Hughes, Vaas, Asif, Fannie, Kallis etc etc


    He also acumulated runs at a phenomenal strike rate against the best bowlers.In the era of 1976-81 including the Wsc supertests Viv performed better than Sobers,Lara or Tendulkar.
    When did Tendulkar, Lara, Sobers play in WSC ?

    Of the 24 Test hundreds he scored, 12 were in wins. Between 1974 and 1991, which is when Richards played his 121 Tests, only Greenidge scored more centuries in wins. Richards also averaged nearly 54 with six centuries in away wins. Unlike some batsmen who struggle to score in the last innings of Tests, his stats were remarkably consistent over the four innings of a match: his average in the first innings of matches was 53, while his average in the fourth innings was nearly 48, which represents one of the lowest variations among top batsmen. (Click here for his career summary.)
    Link missing ....

    So as always highly error prone analysis and little attention to detail and accuracy. Wont stand even basic scrutiny.

  5. #5
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    2nd or 3rd best test batsman ever..

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrish View Post
    2nd or 3rd best test batsman ever..
    Who ahead?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harsh Thakor View Post
    Who ahead?
    Between Viv, SRT and Sobers for me. Keeps changing based on by mood

  8. #8
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    50 at 70 is all I have to say. That's ridiculous considering he batted at 3-4 and the era he played in.


    A skilled hawk conceals its talons.

  9. #9
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    2nd after Sir Donald Bradman.

    Just see the current Aus-BD match how quick batting can turn the match and help your partners greatly. I am sure Viv played plenty like this. SR of 70 is unbelievable in that era that too averaging 50. Must be a match changer!


    Sarfi as captain'll lead us to glory.Babar'll be our best odi bat & Haris'll be world class in tests

  10. #10
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    Started of well averaging 60 regressed towards the end ended up averaging 50 the flair aggression and being good on the eye helps him more than others it looks like.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tusker View Post
    Here is a better and bigger list(Guess who played against them all):
    1. McGrath
    2. Warne
    3. Gillespie
    4. Steyn
    5. Donald
    6. Pollock
    7. Wasim
    8. Waqar
    9. Akhtar
    10. Saqlain
    11. Ambrose
    12. Walsh
    13. Bishop
    14. Bond
    15. Vettori
    16. Muralitharan
    17. Flintoff
    18. Anderson
    19. Swann
    20. Broad


    Bowlers I left out : Imran, Hadlee, Qadir, Harmison, BLee, Fleming, McDermott, Hughes, Vaas, Asif, Fannie, Kallis etc etc




    When did Tendulkar, Lara, Sobers play in WSC ?



    Link missing ....

    So as always highly error prone analysis and little attention to detail and accuracy. Wont stand even basic scrutiny.
    Good analysis.

    While Vivian Richards has played some great attacking innings, but overall he comes nowhere close to Gavaskar in class.

    Compared to Richards, Gavaskar:

    1) had to play better bowling.

    2) had to open (openers should have about 5 runs added to their average to make it a fair comparison).

    3) had greater longevity and scored more total runs.

    4) had an higher average (even with no runs added for opening). And this was over their ENTIRE careers, not some selected sub-sample.

    I wonder why the OP tries tricks like selecting particular years (1976 to 1988 in this case) with the goal of making his favorite look good, and think no one will notice.

    Anyone who ignores statistical facts and thinks Richards is better than Gavaskar is delusional and not worth engaging in discussion.

  12. #12
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    Basically for an Indian, he's a distant 4th behind Lara, little master and tuch tuch Gavaskar, otherwise he's probably the best batsman of the modern era and arguably the greatest ever if you discard anomalies.

  13. #13
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    Top 5 all time at best strike rate was good but average went south over time not enough to be the best ever after Bradman.

  14. #14
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    One of the Top 3 batsmen ever.

  15. #15
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    How many of you saw Viv Richards play?

    Easy to understand question..

    How many of you saw Viv play? And by seeing, I mean watching live on tv or at the ground. YT clips donít count.

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    I started watching cricket in 1996. So, I couldn't watch him live.



  17. #17
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    Saw him from 1983 onward. Still a great players but most of his best knocks were before that time. I saw him live for Delhi test where he won the test by scoring century on a tough Delhi pitch. He brutally thrashed SriLanka by scoring 181 runs during 87WC.


    Aaj ka kaam kal karo, Kal ka kaam parson. Aisi bhi jaldi kya hai, Jab jeena hai barson.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrish View Post
    Easy to understand question..

    How many of you saw Viv play? And by seeing, I mean watching live on tv or at the ground. YT clips don’t count.
    Me. At two Lord’s tests.

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    If runs are the criteria then there will be quite a few ahead of Viv. If the way he made runs is considered , no one better than Viv.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeetu View Post
    Saw him from 1983 onward. Still a great players but most of his best knocks were before that time. I saw him live for Delhi test where he won the test by scoring century on a tough Delhi pitch. He brutally thrashed SriLanka by scoring 181 runs during 87WC.
    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    Me. At two Lord’s tests.
    So, is it true that he was always looking to dominate the best opposition bowlers? And why exactly is he considered the best against pace bowling? What made him so special? And who is the closest player to Viv in modern era?

    I have my opinion on this but trying to get different perspective from the people who actually saw the great man in action.


  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrish View Post
    So, is it true that he was always looking to dominate the best opposition bowlers? And why exactly is he considered the best against pace bowling? What made him so special? And who is the closest player to Viv in modern era?

    I have my opinion on this but trying to get different perspective from the people who actually saw the great man in action.
    It was the swagger to the wicket, the Joe Frazier build, the absolute nonchalance, the time he had to play the ball, how hard and far he could hit it with no real effort, the sheer speed of scoring, that he was always attacking, always trying to get into the bowler’s head and break his spirit. How he could hit really good balls for four to unorthodox places.

    Bob Willis said the only way to make it fair to bowl to him was make the wicket 11 yards not 22.

    I can’t really think of anyone like that playing now. Stokes has the hitting power, Kohli something of the swagger, Smith the speed of thought and unorthodoxy, but not all at the same time like Richards.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    It was the swagger to the wicket, the Joe Frazier build, the absolute nonchalance, the time he had to play the ball, how hard and far he could hit it with no real effort, the sheer speed of scoring, that he was always attacking, always trying to get into the bowler’s head and break his spirit. How he could hit really good balls for four to unorthodox places.

    Bob Willis said the only way to make it fair to bowl to him was make the wicket 11 yards not 22.

    I can’t really think of anyone like that playing now. Stokes has the hitting power, Kohli something of the swagger, Smith the speed of thought and unorthodoxy, but not all at the same time like Richards.
    Thanks. Would it be fair to say that KP and Lara from recent lot were closest players to Richards? Not necessarily in terms of ability but how they would try to dominate the best bowlers from time to time?

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrish View Post
    Thanks. Would it be fair to say that KP and Lara from recent lot were closest players to Richards? Not necessarily in terms of ability but how they would try to dominate the best bowlers from time to time?
    Yeah. And ABDV, who reminded me of Richards at times.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrish View Post
    So, is it true that he was always looking to dominate the best opposition bowlers? And why exactly is he considered the best against pace bowling? What made him so special? And who is the closest player to Viv in modern era?

    I have my opinion on this but trying to get different perspective from the people who actually saw the great man in action.
    Viv Richards has his technical flaws against fast bowlers. What made him apart was ability to take them on. It was the era (pre-helmet) when most batsman were trying to save themselves from serious injury from fast bowlers.
    Whats set Viv Richards apart was his extraordinary reflexes. One of the best hand eye coordination you will ever see.
    Just see the last ball six of the video as a example.


    But that all being said like all great batsman even he had his issues with great fast bowlers like Lillee. Richards had his share of trouble in WI First class cricket against top bowling team.

    This is from a 3 year post of mine.
    Few days back i was going through a Tony Cozier article regarding WI First Class tournament.
    I found something interesting stats regarding Viv Richards. Which should give insight of how Viv handled West Indies bowlers.

    During Viv's playing days Barbados was the most dominating team then.
    Barbados had an awesome pace combination stronger than any, anywhere at the time,Ē Dujon maintains, without exaggeration, bias or fear of contradiction. ďAll had been in the Test side. If you werenít fending off Sylvester Clarke and Wayne Daniel, there would be the swing of Malcolm Marshall and the bounce of that giant, Joel Garner, coming at you.Ē

    Even the most commanding batsman of the time faltered against the Bajans. Viv Richards made scores of 0, 3, 4, 13, 4, 46, 0, 45 and 16 in five matches against Barbados in the first half of the 1980s, including a bowled first ball by Daniel in 1983.

    Viv Richards batsman, Antigua lee/Com
    FC Record in WI - (1972- 91) 54 matches, 3330 runs @ 39.64

    vs Barbados 13 matches, 601 runs @ 27.31

    For West Indies (1974-91) 121 Tests, 8540 runs @ 50.23


    Aaj ka kaam kal karo, Kal ka kaam parson. Aisi bhi jaldi kya hai, Jab jeena hai barson.

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    Havent saw him but read enough to say it must be a pleasure watching him bat.

    Among modern era batters, if de Villiers didn't got influenced by T20 cricket and other popular franchises, he would have been the Viv Richards of his era. Pietersen was also very similar in that sense but Viv was a consistent version of KP.

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    If Sir Viv Richards would have played in this era, what would have been his numbers?

    In both the formats, what exactly would have been Viv Richards average if he debuted around 2010 and retired by 2025?

    Remember, in his era, he averaged 50 in tests while in ODIs, he averaged 47 at Strike rate of 90.

    Discuss!

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    Gavaskar was the better test batsman

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    Test average will be same as tests. He will struggle in India against Ashwin and Jadeja on rank turners. In ODIs, he would be monster (55 average at 110 SR).

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeetu View Post
    Viv Richards has his technical flaws against fast bowlers. What made him apart was ability to take them on. It was the era (pre-helmet) when most batsman were trying to save themselves from serious injury from fast bowlers.
    Whats set Viv Richards apart was his extraordinary reflexes. One of the best hand eye coordination you will ever see.
    Just see the last ball six of the video as a example.


    But that all being said like all great batsman even he had his issues with great fast bowlers like Lillee. Richards had his share of trouble in WI First class cricket against top bowling team.

    This is from a 3 year post of mine.
    I am well aware of these stats and thatís why I have wondered why he is considered to be the best player of pace bowling.

    The main reason I can think of is that he played some attacking innings against express bowlers from time to time. He had a devastating hook and pull shot and some of his battles have really ingrained in the memory of fans: for example hooking ball for six after getting hit by the bouncer. Hitting Lenny Pasco for boundary after he decided to ball 5 bouncers against Viv. His battle against Devon Malcom toward the end of his career.

    Also, he didnít do well in inner-island games but he did face several of those bowlers in county games while playing for Somerset. He must have played memorable knocks at that time as well.

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    The coolest player ever.

    Silky smooth swing and contact with the ball.
    The best guard stance I have seen.

    The greatest batsman I have seen....

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    The most pertinent question to ask is what would Viv Richards have averaged if he had to face his own pace bowling quartet as much as Gavaskar ,Border and the Chappell brothers.I feel in the modern era he may have averaged over 55 with wickets much more placid and conducive to strokeplay ,protective headgear, and less lethal fast bowling.Viv was not a great player against spin like Sachin or Lara and not tested as much in a crisis.It is sheer speculation to envisage how prolific would Viv have been had he played for as weak a side as Lara did or if they exchanged roles.By a whisker I still feel Lara had more natural talent of flair but it was Viv who was more agressive and determined who would turn the complexion of a game more.I feel combining tests and ODI's Viv would be in the top 5 batsmen of all time,just a whisker below Bradman and Sachin.As a cricketer overall I would rank Viv just below Grace,Sobers,Hobbs,Tendulkar and Bradman or maybe Warne.It is also possible that Viv would have had a better statistical record playing for a weaker team like Sachin,Sunny or Lara did making him stand up to more pressure.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justcrazy View Post
    If runs are the criteria then there will be quite a few ahead of Viv. If the way he made runs is considered , no one better than Viv.
    Absolutely correct.Hit the nail on the head.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joseph Gomes View Post
    Gavaskar was the better test batsman
    Even Greg Chappell was better test batsman.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrish View Post
    Thanks. Would it be fair to say that KP and Lara from recent lot were closest players to Richards? Not necessarily in terms of ability but how they would try to dominate the best bowlers from time to time?
    This is my list of the closest batsmen to Viv Richards in order of merit who played after his era.

    1.A.B Devilliers
    2.Kevin Pieterson
    3.Virendra Sehwag
    4.Inzamam Ul Haq
    5.Chris Gayle

    AB's innings were a testimony where he performed like an acrobat performing stunts or a magician revealing explosive power of dynamite.Pieterson ranked 2nd because of his inept skill against great pace,even if Sehwag was more innovative or imaginative.Inzamam was not as violent but possessed the reflexes,eye and timing of Viv playing pace at more ease than anyone.Gayle would literally rip the flesh out of any bowler at his best but not as scientific in his slogging.

    Lara was more the epitome of touch art or grace so did not appear as destructive while Sachin was far more clinical version of Viv.For hoking and puling Ponting was very close.In his time Bary was almost a clone of Viv,but a much greater epitome of bating perfection even if less talented.

  35. #35
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    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

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    batted with a s.r of 70 in an era of big grounds, small bats, and no helmets. avereage of 50 home and away, and averaged 56 in world series cricket over 15 games.

    its all subjective, but for me hes the second best test batsman after bradman, third if steve smith manages to maintain a mid 60s average over his career.

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    Could a Tendulkar or a Lara coped with playing against quick bowlers without helmets-No chance. Tendulkar used to get hit by medium pacers like Jimmy. Could Viv have coped in the era of helmets and 2 bouncers-yes. You have your answer. Richards only weakness was that he was too proud, if there is a such a thing and he was desperate to dominate and didn't care for stats. You could imagine Richards killing himself rather than score a double hundred like that scored by Tendulkar in Sydney in the early 2000s. They were all brilliant players but Viv created the template that modern players follow. Stats didn't seem to matter much, whilst Lara and Tendulkar lived for them.
    Last edited by Bewal Express; 23rd November 2020 at 01:41.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andy0204 View Post
    Even Greg Chappell was better test batsman.
    No he wasn't. Don't just look at the stats, read what people of the time say or the players that played against them. Chappell was a greaf player and Sunny was also one of the greats but even they would admit that they weren't in his class.

  39. #39
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    Been fortunate to see many wonderful batsmen but none better than Viv

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    Great batsmen but will put him below Bradman, Smith, Tendulkar and Lara in test cricket.

    Didn't faced many great bowlers as they played mostly in his team and also struggled vs quality spinners like Chandra and Qadir. Viv's record vs Pakistan is poor. One of the most feared entity in the world of cricket but not versatile enough.
    Last edited by Ab Fan; 23rd November 2020 at 02:43.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ab Fan View Post
    Great batsmen but will put him below Bradman, Smith, Tendulkar and Lara in test cricket.

    Didn't faced many great bowlers as they played mostly in his team and also struggled vs quality spinners like Chandra and Qadir. Viv's record vs Pakistan is poor. One of the most feared entity in the world of cricket but not versatile enough.
    Botham, Willis, Kapil, Imran, Hadlee, Lillee, Thomo etc. weren't great bowlers ? Every team had atleast one ATG bowler during Viv's time.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harsh Thakor View Post
    The most pertinent question to ask is what would Viv Richards have averaged if he had to face his own pace bowling quartet as much as Gavaskar ,Border and the Chappell brothers.I feel in the modern era he may have averaged over 55 with wickets much more placid and conducive to strokeplay ,protective headgear, and less lethal fast bowling.Viv was not a great player against spin like Sachin or Lara and not tested as much in a crisis.It is sheer speculation to envisage how prolific would Viv have been had he played for as weak a side as Lara did or if they exchanged roles.By a whisker I still feel Lara had more natural talent of flair but it was Viv who was more agressive and determined who would turn the complexion of a game more.I feel combining tests and ODI's Viv would be in the top 5 batsmen of all time,just a whisker below Bradman and Sachin.As a cricketer overall I would rank Viv just below Grace,Sobers,Hobbs,Tendulkar and Bradman or maybe Warne.It is also possible that Viv would have had a better statistical record playing for a weaker team like Sachin,Sunny or Lara did making him stand up to more pressure.
    Bowling is not less lethal now.
    Bowling is far better now.
    Players are lucky to be wearing protective gearing, helmets etc hence they survive the onslaught unleashed by pace bowlers of MODERN era which actually has the best bowlers of all time.

    Batting looked better back then because players din't have to play t20 and other franchise cricket before a major test series.

    I do think batsmen were more skilful in Viv's era but bowling is definitely the best at present era.

    Imagine if current bowlers could bowl to batsmen with no helmets, no protective gearing, unlimited bouncer rule. Just think about it. I know for some it's very difficult to accept the bitter truth but past is often overrated due to nostalgic reasons. You are not being objective if you think current bowling isn't better.

    There are professional sides now. Pot belly beer belly stars exist but it isn't the norm anymore.

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    I'll rate him as the second greatest batsman of the post war era after the great Sir Garfield Sobers. And that is why I take such pride over his comments on Sachin Tendulkar which is there in my signature.


    If there is a better batsman than Sachin then he hasn't arrived yet: Viv Richards

  44. #44
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    The GOAT in both the formats.No one is close to him in any of the format.

  45. #45
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    The best ever batsman.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by moghul View Post
    The best ever batsman.
    That place has already been taken years ago by Donald Bradman.


    If there is a better batsman than Sachin then he hasn't arrived yet: Viv Richards

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    No he wasn't. Don't just look at the stats, read what people of the time say or the players that played against them. Chappell was a greaf player and Sunny was also one of the greats but even they would admit that they weren't in his class.
    I think he underachieved in tests,he should have taken retirement after that famous Pakistan series in 1988.


    Why is Monday so far from Friday, and Friday so close to Monday?

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by andy0204 View Post
    I think he underachieved in tests,he should have taken retirement after that famous Pakistan series in 1988.
    But if you look at his batting, stats weren't important to him compared to Lara and Tendulkar. There was a bizarre period in the 90s when the Ind fans cared more for a Sachin 100, than a victory for Ind. Laras record breaking scores were both incredibly selfish and 2 of his worst innings

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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by andy0204 View Post
    I think he underachieved in tests,he should have taken retirement after that famous Pakistan series in 1988.
    He underachieved in nothing. He set insurmountable standards.

    Those who haven't seen him play will judge him by his stats - which even if astronomical, do no justice at all to his impact on each game he played .

    Once in 10 generations cricketer. Unmatched.

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corridor of Uncertainty View Post
    He underachieved in nothing. He set insurmountable standards.

    Those who haven't seen him play will judge him by his stats - which even if astronomical, do no justice at all to his impact on each game he played .

    Once in 10 generations cricketer. Unmatched.
    Considering w.indies have had some real legends in batting, why aren't the new generation of W.indies able to get inspired by these past era greats and attain greatness in cricket?

    Are all of their real athletes crossing over to b.ball or soccer?

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corridor of Uncertainty View Post
    He underachieved in nothing. He set insurmountable standards.

    Those who haven't seen him play will judge him by his stats - which even if astronomical, do no justice at all to his impact on each game he played .

    Once in 10 generations cricketer. Unmatched.
    He definitely underachieved in Tests. There was a point in his career where he was averaging 57 odd. That average dropped to 50. What does that tell? One can claim that he didn't care about stats, but his average dropping from 57 to 50 definitely tells that he declined towards the later part of his career. Imran Khan himself says that he didn't time his retirement right. The man who was a God gifted genius for the most part of his career lost his razor sharp reflexes and became a mere mortal during the last few years of his career. And that's what Imran Khan says, not me.

    Anyways, doesn't matter. He stills remains the second greatest batsman of the post war era for me.


    If there is a better batsman than Sachin then he hasn't arrived yet: Viv Richards

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hitman View Post
    He definitely underachieved in Tests. There was a point in his career where he was averaging 57 odd. That average dropped to 50. What does that tell? One can claim that he didn't care about stats, but his average dropping from 57 to 50 definitely tells that he declined towards the later part of his career. Imran Khan himself says that he didn't time his retirement right. The man who was a God gifted genius for the most part of his career lost his razor sharp reflexes and became a mere mortal during the last few years of his career. And that's what Imran Khan says, not me.

    Anyways, doesn't matter. He stills remains the second greatest batsman of the post war era for me.
    The best batsman I ever saw. Youn canít compare eras. But he was way ahead of his peers . Could have scored more and had even a better average. Just did not care for stats. Fearless player

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nadeemp View Post
    The best batsman I ever saw. Youn can’t compare eras. But he was way ahead of his peers . Could have scored more and had even a better average. Just did not care for stats. Fearless player
    That's what I'm saying. Even though the best batsman of the modern era, he too had a decline and underachieved compared to the herculean talent that he had. Just because he underachieved doesn't make him any less of a player. But to have his average from 57 odd to 50 odd, it definitely tells that he declined towards the later part of his career.

    I rate him slightly ahead of Tendulkar and Lara, and the only batsman I'd rate ahead of him from the post war era is the great Garfield Sobers.


    If there is a better batsman than Sachin then he hasn't arrived yet: Viv Richards

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hitman View Post
    He definitely underachieved in Tests. There was a point in his career where he was averaging 57 odd. That average dropped to 50. What does that tell? One can claim that he didn't care about stats, but his average dropping from 57 to 50 definitely tells that he declined towards the later part of his career. Imran Khan himself says that he didn't time his retirement right. The man who was a God gifted genius for the most part of his career lost his razor sharp reflexes and became a mere mortal during the last few years of his career. And that's what Imran Khan says, not me.

    Anyways, doesn't matter. He stills remains the second greatest batsman of the post war era for me.
    I dont' disagree with you on averages/declines @Hitman. My point remains - forget his decline years and his average. It doesn't matter in the larger scheme of things.

    People don't remember Maradona by his last years of decline when he was playing club football in Argentina. You remember what he did to his sport.

    Richards has 15 years of genius to remember him by. That's enough for me.

    Who is your greatest post war batsman?

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyron_woodley View Post
    Considering w.indies have had some real legends in batting, why aren't the new generation of W.indies able to get inspired by these past era greats and attain greatness in cricket?

    Are all of their real athletes crossing over to b.ball or soccer?
    That would be for a Windies expert to answer

    I just think it's cycles. Apart from some countries who have infrastructure and systems to always keep them at or near the top, countries like Pakistan and West Indies only thrive when they get some freak sporting talents arrive in the team in the same era. When it happens, they are the top, otherwise they struggle.

    Happens in other sport too. You will get Germany, France, Argentina etc near the top always, while others like Columbia or Uruguay will rise when they have a Suarez etc.

    But I may be way off on this one

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    Quote Originally Posted by szrana007 View Post
    Botham, Willis, Kapil, Imran, Hadlee, Lillee, Thomo etc. weren't great bowlers ? Every team had atleast one ATG bowler during Viv's time.
    Thompson was a mediocre bowler.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ishtiaq_ctg View Post
    Thompson was a mediocre bowler.
    Not mediocre, but definitely good. It would be an overstatement to call him great, but he was definitely good/decent.


    If there is a better batsman than Sachin then he hasn't arrived yet: Viv Richards

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    Viv was ahead of his time and a box office cricketer with a permanent legacy.

    Quote Originally Posted by tyron_woodley View Post
    Considering w.indies have had some real legends in batting, why aren't the new generation of W.indies able to get inspired by these past era greats and attain greatness in cricket?

    Are all of their real athletes crossing over to b.ball or soccer?
    The administrators thought the supply chain of greats would never end and didn't invest in grassroots coaching or domestic cricket.

    County cricket was also the finishing school for many players who went on to become greats but that option now is limited.

  60. #60
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    Best batsman I ever saw play...still remember the 1984 odi inns against England at Old Trafford.

    He made 189 no.

    What a battering Eng boys got...remember Neil Foster?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ishtiaq_ctg View Post
    Thompson was a mediocre bowler.
    Not in the 75-78 era. He was brutal and quick.

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    One of the best ever and without question a Top 20 level test batsman. Arguably even Top 10 if you take into account how quick he could make his runs.

    A game changer.

  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by freelance_cricketer View Post
    One of the best ever and without question a Top 20 level test batsman. Arguably even Top 10 if you take into account how quick he could make his runs.

    A game changer.
    Top 20? Top 10? Who are these amazing 19 and 9 batsman better than Viv. Ignore Bradman because no one alive today saw him play. If Viv is only top 20, where does it leave the likes of Tendulkar and Lara, in the top 30?

  64. #64
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    Viv is surely amongst the top 10 batsman in tests, in the same class as Tendulkar, lara and gavaskar(the greatest opener ever)

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Top 20? Top 10? Who are these amazing 19 and 9 batsman better than Viv. Ignore Bradman because no one alive today saw him play. If Viv is only top 20, where does it leave the likes of Tendulkar and Lara, in the top 30?
    We have had some great discussions on PP regarding greatest test cricketers. You can check those and especially the draft picks threads to get a hint. By the way you are making it sound like it is a disgrace to be among Top 20 greatest batsmen of a 150 years old sport. ********* aside when you actually start making a list, you would be surprised to know how deep it goes and how some ATG cricketers would be holding unimaginable rankings by the end of it.

    Since you asked,

    Tendulkar is a Top 5 level test batsman, Arguably Top 3.

    Brian Lara is Top 10 level test batsman, arguably Top 5.

  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by freelance_cricketer View Post
    We have had some great discussions on PP regarding greatest test cricketers. You can check those and especially the draft picks threads to get a hint. By the way you are making it sound like it is a disgrace to be among Top 20 greatest batsmen of a 150 years old sport. ********* aside when you actually start making a list, you would be surprised to know how deep it goes and how some ATG cricketers would be holding unimaginable rankings by the end of it.

    Since you asked,

    Tendulkar is a Top 5 level test batsman, Arguably Top 3.

    Brian Lara is Top 10 level test batsman, arguably Top 5.
    I agree they were both brilliant players but Neither could have ever done what Richards did. Richards was a warrior, a lion, redefined batting in the modern era along with Pollock and the other Richards.

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    Viv doesn't belong to top 10 greatest test batsmen of all-time. This is the actual list:-

    1. Don Bradman
    2. Jack Hobbs( Father of cricket)
    3. WC Grace
    4. Ernest Tyldesly
    5. Garfield Sobers
    6. Victor Trumper
    7. KS RanjitSinghji
    8. George Headley
    9. Sachin Tendulkar
    10. Brian Lara

    Viv fans must understand cricket didn't started yesterday, the game is going from 150 years now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    I agree they were both brilliant players but Neither could have ever done what Richards did. Richards was a warrior, a lion, redefined batting in the modern era along with Pollock and the other Richards.
    Every player you mentioned has done something the others didn't. That's the beauty of the game and level of competition among the best of the best players. Viv Richards will always be remembered with respect and awe for his iconic stature at which it is perfectly reasonable for someone to put him at #1 as well.

    Judging his career purely by what he achieved at the end of the day across 120 some test matches, it is not odd to put a number of guys ahead of him. For instance your own countryman Javed Miandad has better career numbers than Viv. Not saying he's better than Viv but clearly Viv's career numbers in tests do not perfectly match the hype.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ab Fan View Post
    Viv doesn't belong to top 10 greatest test batsmen of all-time. This is the actual list:-

    1. Don Bradman
    2. Jack Hobbs( Father of cricket)
    3. WC Grace
    4. Ernest Tyldesly
    5. Garfield Sobers
    6. Victor Trumper
    7. KS RanjitSinghji
    8. George Headley
    9. Sachin Tendulkar
    10. Brian Lara

    Viv fans must understand cricket didn't started yesterday, the game is going from 150 years now.
    Tendulkar and Lara wouldnt have coped with the bouncer barrage in the 70s in particular, and the early 80s. Viv would have been comfortable in any era. Tendulkar used to get hit by medium pacers like Jimmy in the over protected era of the 2000s. Just a imagine the likes of Lillee, Thompson, Pascoe, IK bowling unlimited bouncers. The best ever Ind player is Sunni.

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    Quote Originally Posted by freelance_cricketer View Post
    Every player you mentioned has done something the others didn't. That's the beauty of the game and level of competition among the best of the best players. Viv Richards will always be remembered with respect and awe for his iconic stature at which it is perfectly reasonable for someone to put him at #1 as well.

    Judging his career purely by what he achieved at the end of the day across 120 some test matches, it is not odd to put a number of guys ahead of him. For instance your own countryman Javed Miandad has better career numbers than Viv. Not saying he's better than Viv but clearly Viv's career numbers in tests do not perfectly match the hype.
    Stats can make good players look average and average players look great. I think the courage people required to play in the 70s was much greater. Its the reason most players went back and across, not plonk their feet on the front foot. I am not going to say anything against the likes of Lara and Tendulkar because they were brilliant players of their era, but if you put these 2 against teams that bowled 4 bouncers an over and both struggled against the short ball, there wouldn't be a comparison. Lara, Tendulkar and Kallis wanted stats to be good, Viv wanted to dominate.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Stats can make good players look average and average players look great. I think the courage people required to play in the 70s was much greater. Its the reason most players went back and across, not plonk their feet on the front foot. I am not going to say anything against the likes of Lara and Tendulkar because they were brilliant players of their era, but if you put these 2 against teams that bowled 4 bouncers an over and both struggled against the short ball, there wouldn't be a comparison. Lara, Tendulkar and Kallis wanted stats to be good, Viv wanted to dominate.
    If Lara, Tendulkar,Ponting wanted stats to be good their average would have been 55+ but still they averaged below 55,its not that they were not dominating.


    Why is Monday so far from Friday, and Friday so close to Monday?

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    Quote Originally Posted by andy0204 View Post
    If Lara, Tendulkar,Ponting wanted stats to be good their average would have been 55+ but still they averaged below 55,its not that they were not dominating.
    It wasn't through a lack of trying that they didn't average 55, as they got older their reflexes weren't as sharp. They were all brilliant players but out of those 3 only Ponting had the technique to cope with the style of bowling in the 70s and most of the 80s and be as successful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jeeteshssaxena View Post
    Viv is surely amongst the top 10 batsman in tests, in the same class as Tendulkar, lara and gavaskar(the greatest opener ever)
    In his peak 2nd only to Bradman in tests Remember WSC performances.Averaged 60+ from 1976-81 which speaks for itself.considering bowling attacks of that time and lack of protective headgear.Lara ,Tendulkar or even Bradman could not at their best turn the complexion of games like Viv did.If one scales strike rate for era Viv would even beat a AB Devilliers or a Sehwag.Viv took batting domination to regions of divinty .No batsman ever was as mercurial.To average 86.2 in 1977-78 in WSC was a phenomenal achievement.

    One should read the views of players out of Viv's era who still rank him the best they saw like Saed Anwar,Inzamam Ul Haq,Virat Kohli ,Shane Warne and Alan Donald.Players of Viv's era like Botham,Shastri,Imran ,Lillee or Willis rate him on a pedestal higher than anyone which is significant.Statistaically Gavaskar and Greg Chappell may have been better but in terms of impact Viv overshadowed them .No batsman ever was such a nightmare or terror for a great pace bowler like Viv which is testified by the likes of fiery pacemen like Lillee,Imran and Willis.

    Where Viv can be questioned is that he did not play his own great pace attack and possibly floundered to an extent facing Mlacolm Marshall in Carribean County cricket.Viv also played for a champion team so was not fully tested.However there is no doubt that Viv was the ultimate match winner .Viv did not have the apetite for mammoth scores like Lara or the consistency of Tendulkar,but still when taking bowlers to the sword played a more defining role.

    No overseas batsman played better than Viv against top Australian teams.

    On fast bouncy wicker the best of all but perhaps on a bad wicket not better than Sachin or Lara,or tested as much.For pure talent,perhaps Lara was head by a whisker.

    Statistics are misleading as wickets changed in eras and playing conditions.Remember Viv has a better average overseas than at home and against express pace is better than Tendulkar,Lara and Ponting.Viv did not have Tendulkar's durability but still was more ahead of his batting peers in a Golden age than Sachin,Lara or even Smith.Notable that although Wasim bowled much more to Sachin and Lara,he rated Viv the best.Viv was more unbowlable to pacemen than any batsmen ever.

    Overrall definitely in top 10 in tests .Possibly a whisker below Lara and Tendulkar considering durability of the two maestros and more proven performances in a crisis.Tentatively Viv was only behind Bradman,Lara,Hobbs,Tendulkar and possibly Sobers.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Stats can make good players look average and average players look great. I think the courage people required to play in the 70s was much greater. Its the reason most players went back and across, not plonk their feet on the front foot. I am not going to say anything against the likes of Lara and Tendulkar because they were brilliant players of their era, but if you put these 2 against teams that bowled 4 bouncers an over and both struggled against the short ball, there wouldn't be a comparison. Lara, Tendulkar and Kallis wanted stats to be good, Viv wanted to dominate.
    Deeply complement your profound analysis proving that Viv was a king.However Viv was not such a champion against spin or tested so much in a crisis.

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by freelance_cricketer View Post
    We have had some great discussions on PP regarding greatest test cricketers. You can check those and especially the draft picks threads to get a hint. By the way you are making it sound like it is a disgrace to be among Top 20 greatest batsmen of a 150 years old sport. ********* aside when you actually start making a list, you would be surprised to know how deep it goes and how some ATG cricketers would be holding unimaginable rankings by the end of it.

    Since you asked,

    Tendulkar is a Top 5 level test batsman, Arguably Top 3.

    Brian Lara is Top 10 level test batsman, arguably Top 5.
    Were not Sachin and Lara better on bad wickers or against spin bowling?Also more proven in a crisis?Remember Lara's penchant for mammoth scores and singlehandedly turning games as well as Tendulkar's longevity.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hitman View Post
    That's what I'm saying. Even though the best batsman of the modern era, he too had a decline and underachieved compared to the herculean talent that he had. Just because he underachieved doesn't make him any less of a player. But to have his average from 57 odd to 50 odd, it definitely tells that he declined towards the later part of his career.

    I rate him slightly ahead of Tendulkar and Lara, and the only batsman I'd rate ahead of him from the post war era is the great Garfield Sobers.
    I deeply complement you on this comment.If he wished he could have broken every batting record.

    Were not Sachin and Lara better on bad wickers or against spin bowling?Also more proven in a crisis?Remember Lara's penchant for mammoth scores and singlehandedly turning games as well as Tendulkar's longevity.

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Tendulkar and Lara wouldnt have coped with the bouncer barrage in the 70s in particular, and the early 80s. Viv would have been comfortable in any era. Tendulkar used to get hit by medium pacers like Jimmy in the over protected era of the 2000s. Just a imagine the likes of Lillee, Thompson, Pascoe, IK bowling unlimited bouncers. The best ever Ind player is Sunni.
    They would have. It's just about getting used to. Some players who have never wore a helmet, if you ask them to bat with a helmet they will find it relatively harder to get used to with it.

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    It wasn't through a lack of trying that they didn't average 55, as they got older their reflexes weren't as sharp. They were all brilliant players but out of those 3 only Ponting had the technique to cope with the style of bowling in the 70s and most of the 80s and be as successful.
    On a bad wicket was not Lara or Tendulkar more proven?Did not Lara turn games singlehandedly more than anyone and Tendulkar more durable?

    Anyway salute your comment.

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ab Fan View Post
    Viv doesn't belong to top 10 greatest test batsmen of all-time. This is the actual list:-

    1. Don Bradman
    2. Jack Hobbs( Father of cricket)
    3. WC Grace
    4. Ernest Tyldesly
    5. Garfield Sobers
    6. Victor Trumper
    7. KS RanjitSinghji
    8. George Headley
    9. Sachin Tendulkar
    10. Brian Lara

    Viv fans must understand cricket didn't started yesterday, the game is going from 150 years now.
    Why not Brian Lara at atleast 3 if not 2 and whey below Sobers?No Gavaskar in top 10 or Viv and No Tendulkar in top 5?Very hard to accept.Anyway well done for having a diverse viewpoint.

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert View Post
    Best I ever saw, though Lara was close.
    For pure talent of genius Lara not ahead by a whisker?Is not Lara ahead for singlehandedly carrying the brunt of a wek batting line up line no batting great and even in a crisis taking bowling apart?Was not Tendulkar more durable and complete?


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