V.V.S. Laxman - A Very Very Special Batsman

Vangipurappu Venkata Sai Laxman was born on 1st November 1974 at Hyderabad. He studied at Little Flower High School and St. John’s School in Hyderabad. Both his parents are doctors. He also studied medical science for a short time but later discontinued to play professional cricket. His nickname is `Very Very Special’.

V.V.S. Laxman has played for Hyderabad in the Ranji Trophy and for Lancashire County. He made his test debut on 20th November 1996 against South Africa at Ahmadabad. He made his one day international debut against Zimbabwe at Cuttack on 9th April 1998. He has not played any T20 Internationals nor has he played a single world cup match in one day internationals. He has played 123 tests so far, scoring 8,146 runs with a highest of 281. He has taken 124 catches and two wickets. He has 16 centuries and 52 fifties in tests. He has played 86 one day matches, scoring 2,338 runs with a highest of 131. He has 6 centuries and 10 fifties. He has taken 39 catches. He has played 427 first class matches, scoring 23,963 runs with a highest of 353. He has taken 340 catches. He has 62 centuries and 121 fifties. He has taken 30 wickets.

V. V. S. Laxman is a right hand batsman and a right arm off break bowler. His highest test score of 281 against Australia at Kolkata in 2001 has been ranked sixth in Wisden’s list of hundred great test innings in history. The greatest test innings tag has gone to Sir Donald Bradman’s 270 against England at Melbourne in 1936. V.V.S. Laxman was also named Wisden’s Cricketer of the Year in 2002.

He is well known for playing the spinners exceptionally well. He can play the ball to any part of the ground with the use of his wrists. He has performed well against Australia in both the tests and the one day matches.  He is not considered to be a great runner between the wickets. It is interesting to note that despite playing in over 120 tests, he has not played even once in any world cup. He started his one day match account with a duck against Zimbabwe in 1998 and also scored a duck in his last one day match against South Africa in 2006.

V.V.S. Laxman’s onside play is reminiscent of Mohammad Azharuddin. The Australians paid a great compliment to him when they admitted to the Australian press media that they were not able to decide where to bowl to him when India toured them in 2004. He keeps the scoreboard moving at a decent pace with his leg glances and deft placement. He possesses a great quality of remaining calm even when he is well set. He is not at all lacking in temperament. He can play any shot. He is a match turner and a match winner. He is a trusted partner and a tail ender’s companion. He is of a pleasant disposition and is very down to earth in nature. He dared to tell the selectors in the late nineties that he will play only in the middle order and not open the innings for India because he felt confident of his abilities as a middle order batsman. Just few days back, he has moved to the top ten in the ICC test batsman rankings after his good performance during the West Indies tour.

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Juror Tahseen Nakavi

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V.V.S. Laxman , Cricket


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