How Many Times West Indies Won Cricket World Cup Sunny and Boycs

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Sunny and Boycs

There have been some truly great opening batsmen who have won test cricket since its advent in the early 20th century. Some of them left an undeniable mark on international cricket. We are truly unfortunate people of this generation who did not see their full talent and could not see for ourselves why they are so highly regarded. To name but a few, WG Grace, Sir Len Hutton, Jack Hobbs and Barry Richards immediately come to mind. Barry Richards was unlucky as he did not play much international cricket due to the ban on South African cricket at the time. However, we are fortunate to have seen some magnificent opening batsmen in our time such as Gordon Greenidge, Matt Hayden, Virendra Sehwag, Bobby Simpson, Graham Gooch etc. Boycott.

In 1972 Sir Donald Bradman selected the rest of the world team to come to Australia and play a test series against Australia. There has been a lot of speculation about who he will pick as the best players for World 11. Geoffrey Boycott was a predictable finish for the opening slot as he has established himself as the world’s leading opening batsman. But surprise surprise, Bradman’s choice was Sunil Gavaskar. This shocked many cricket critics of the time. Sunny Gavaskar had made headlines with a sensational debut against the West Indies in their backyard. But just that alone would not have been enough for the biggest legend of cricket at the time to make the decision. Sunny did not disappoint the Don in the years to come with an unparalleled career. He scored 13 test hundreds against the West Indies which was the greatest fast bowling attack at the time. As if that was not enough he scored 8 test hundreds against Australia which was the second best bowling attack at the time and 5 hundreds against Pakistan which was the third. So if you see his record amazingly his top 3 aggregates of centuries against the top 3 bowling attacks at the time and with the highest runs scored against the best attack at the top. This is an amazing feat and should be considered even higher than the record number of runs and centuries he set in his time. The man would not give his wicket away anyway. People criticized him for being selfish or slow and what not. But he has answered all those questions. His 94-ball hundred against WI in Delhi was a clear indication that he could score runs quickly if required. But he preferred to crush the opposition with a huge price tag on his wicket. There was another reason for this as well. At the time, India’s middle order was vulnerable and it was his wicket that used to seal the fate of the match for Indians more or less. Remember there was no helmet at the time and Gavaskar bowled and weaved through to many centuries against the most ferocious fast bowling attacks of the time. Sunny Gavaskar was a memorable figure of quality opening batsmen.

Geoffrey Boycott’s was at the end of his career when I really started to understand test cricket. He later became famous among Indian cricket fans for his television commentary with a Yorkshire accent. I still remember going into splits when he described Courtney Walsh’s innings. He rated Walsh as the world’s worst batsman. He was funny as a commentator. What was evident through all this was the knowledge of the game. The man is a display of technical batting. Absolutely nothing has eluded this man for batting. Technical proficiency was embodied in the way he batted and set about building his innings. When Boycott plays a driving cover you can rest assured that it’s the best way to do it. I remember him telling a young person how to play a forward defensive stroke and he was telling him how to bend his leg to a certain degree and where his chin should be placed. It was amazing to watch. Boycs hated to give his wicket away. Sometimes it was said that it cost England in terms of winning the games, but that is mostly speculation. England did not lose a test match in which Boycott scored a hundred. He was the greatest first-class cricket opening batsman of all time. He averaged more than 100 twice in first-class cricket in the seventies.

Sunny and Boycs think that Boycs is a little better than Sunny. This thinking comes mainly from Boycott’s technical prowess but I don’t think so. I think Sunny is being modest after looking at his record. Scoring that kind of runs against the best in the world consistently and in their backyard takes some doing. I rate Sunny slightly better than Boycs. Not much in it though as Boycs said. 19-20.

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