March 1, 2009

England in West Indies 2008-09

Bopara - the best British Asian cricketer

Nishi Narayanan

Ravi Bopara's maiden Test century has put pressure on Owais Shah's place in the England side, writes David Gower in the Sunday Times.

Both give the impression they know what they are about in the middle and from what we have seen in these past two matches Shah has an in-your-face self-confidence that can make him seem self-absorbed, while Bopara has an air of bravado that allows him to give full rein to his attacking instincts.

To Scyld Berry, in the Sunday Telegraph, Bopara is the finest British Asian cricketer there has yet been.

Bopara is the most talented British Asian cricketer there has yet been, unless the term is anachronistically applied to the Jam Sahib of Nawanagar, Kumar Shri Ranjitsinhji. Although more than a century has passed since his time, the sense of wonder of the near-capacity crowd at Kensington Oval – English almost to a man – when Bopara leg-glanced straight balls, with a twist of his wrists, was much the same as when Ranji thrilled Sussex and England crowds with his invention of the stroke.

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Nishi Narayanan is a staff writer at ESPNcricinfo

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