When the Indian legend Sunil Gavaskar speaks or expresses his views on any topic – the world takes notice and listens carefully. Gavaskar, who was the first to breach the 10000-mark in Test cricket, named two bowlers who he feared the most during his playing days. The former India batsman is widely regarded as one of the greatest batsmen to have ever played the game. During his glittering career, Gavaskar faced some of the quickest bowlers in the longest format of the game and dominated them.
The former India captain faced the likes of West Indies quartet of Malcolm Marshall, Joel Garner, Michael Holding and Andy Roberts, along with Australia’s Jeff Thomson and Dennis Lillee, Imran Khan, Ian Botham of England and Richard Hadlee. All these pacers could easily clock speeds above 140 and can prove to be a nightmare for even the best of the batsmen. The ‘Little Master’ – Gavaskar played all of them with aplomb and displayed a fearless brand of cricket without the protective gear.
In his recent interview on the Cricket Analyst Show on YouTube, the 71-year-old Gavaskar named two bowlers who he feared the most during his playing days.”Two bowlers whom I feared in terms or pace, and quality of bowling. In terms of pace, I think Jeff Thomson was the quickest and in terms of the ability to get your out any time, it was Andy Roberts, with Malcolm Marshall, Richard Hadlee and Imran Khan just a bit below. But Andy had the great ability to get you out even if you’re past a 100. He was the bowler you had to be most watchful against,” Gavaskar said.
Roberts, who picked up 202 wickets in 47 Tests, was known for his accuracy and nagging line and lengths. He is also widely regarded as the father of modern-day West Indian fast bowling. Meanwhile, Thomson was hailed as the fastest bowler to have ever played the game. The Aussie quick scalped 200 wickets in 51 Tests.
Gavaskar also rated the legendary Sir Viv Richards as the best batsman of his era. He described Windies batter as someone who would go after the bowlers from the word go. “Who was the best batsman that I saw? I think everybody agrees that it is Viv Richards for the way he dominated the opposition attack. Just took the game away. So he’s got to be the best opposition batsman that I have seen,” said Gavaskar.