June 15, 2014

Vishy or Sunny? Venky or Pras?

What sort of interminable arguments have you had with your friends and relatives about cricketers?
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When it comes to fans comparing favourite players, expect no balance © PA Photos

If Indians are an argumentative lot, as Amartya Sen would have it, the southern variety of the species is perhaps even more so.

Belying their reputation for gentleness, cricket fans in Bangalore and Chennai back in the 1970s were passionate and often quite intemperate when it came to debating matters relating to the game. The topics ranged far and wide - the comparative merits of individual players, which team was the best in the world, who was the greatest allrounder to have played the game, which bowler was the fastest ever, and so on.

In the pre-television era, without ICC rankings, and before the smartphone gave you access to ESPNcricinfo's database in a jiffy, let's just say that many of these debates were unburdened by facts and enabled by imagination.

Three topics seemed to be staples during my time as a schoolboy down south back in the 1970s: Was Gavaskar a better batsman than Viswanath? Who was the better offspinner: Prasanna or Venkataraghavan? And was Pataudi the better captain, or was it Wadekar? A lot, of course, hinged on the term "better" and the absence of clear-cut rules on debating protocols made for both endless argumentation and a lot of entertainment.

While Gavaskar won the statistical battle over Vishy hands down, supporters of the latter immediately widened the debate to include matters of style, scoring when it counts, difficulty of conditions, and a host of other factors. To which, predictably, Sunny's supporters would point out the immense burden of opening the batting, facing fresh bowlers with hard, new cherries in hand, and often doing so after many hours of toil in the field with just a ten-minute interval in between. In essence, though, the debate was really one of style versus technique: Gavaskar was copybook perfect, while Vishy was the outrageous improviser whose batting inevitably had that element of added risk.

Almost imperceptibly, as the impossibility of settling the matter through recourse to statistics or other hard evidence became obvious, the argument would increase in vehemence and begin to lose integrity. Disparaging comments about Vishy's girth would be countered with allusions to Sunny's notorious go-slow in the inaugural match of the 1975 World Cup; and the former's selflessness contrasted with the latter's allegedly relentless pursuit of records. I don't think a single mind was changed in the course of these interminable debates - but then again that may not have been the point at all.

I generally knew it was time to head home around the point when the debate degenerated into who was the handsomer of the two offspinners, or which one had better sideburns

While Prasanna's Test record as bowler definitely outdoes Venky's, the latter's supporters found plenty of material to work with in arguing for their man. For one thing, Venky was by some distance the better fielder (being especially fabulous in the gully) compared to the portly Pras, of whom the best that could be said was that he rarely dropped dollies. And as a batsman Venkat was clearly superior. Prasanna's supporters would energetically try to confine the debate to who was the better bowler, only to have their restrictions trampled on by Venky's fans, who widened the terms of reference to other skills.

Older friends, claiming access to esoteric inside information, would suggest the miserly Venky took fewer wickets because his job was that of a container, while the more profligate Prasanna got more scalps as captains indulged his preference to buy his wickets with runs. It was all evidently part of a deep division of labour that we neophytes were clueless about. Such efforts to defuse the argument rarely got anywhere and it resumed with renewed vigour after such momentarily puzzling interludes. I generally knew it was time to head home around the point when the debate degenerated into who was the handsomer of the two offspinners, or which one had better sideburns.

Fans of my generation had pretty much got used to the idea of the Nawab of Pataudi as the permanent captain of the Indian team (sort of like the divine right of kings being extended to cricket as well) when he was suddenly replaced by Wadekar for the tour to the West Indies in 1971. As everyone well knows, Wadekar's team proceeded to beat West Indies and then the English on their home turf - events that each have the same frequency as the coming of Halley's Comet. Fans of the Noob immediately attributed Wadekar's success to a variety of reasons, none of them having anything to do with his acumen as a captain. West Indies were a team in transition; had it not been for the weather, the series in England might well have ended 2-1 in their favour; Wadekar was plain lucky and tactical nous had nothing to do with it, and so on.

The Bombay left-hander's fans countered such allegations by simply pointing out that India won three successive Test series with their man at the helm - surely luck could not explain them all. Moreover, Pataudi was a poor captain because he was an aloof aristocrat, whereas the commoner Wadekar clearly had all his men behind him in a unified cause.

This was one debate soon overtaken by events on the ground. Wadekar's team copped one of the worst hidings ever during their 1974 tour of England. His own lack of form, and the obvious dissent in the ranks, ended his cricketing career abruptly and certainly left a dark cloud over his legacy as captain.

The Nawab didn't fare much better on his return to the captaincy for the home series against Clive Lloyd's West Indies in 1974-75, though there were plenty of glimpses of his legendary ability to read the game, the opponent, and to set the appropriate traps. India fought gamely to square the series after falling behind 2-0, but they did eventually lose the fifth and final Test. More importantly, it was clear Pataudi was done as a Test batsman when the fierce pace of Andy Roberts proved too hot for him to handle. Less than a year after Wadekar's ignominious exit, Pataudi followed him into the sunset.

Somehow the issue of India's captaincy has never seemed quite so charged in all the decades since.

I don't think such arguments have disappeared by any means. A look at ESPNcricinfo's comments section, or the vehement postings on various blogs on the respective merits of Tendulkar and Dravid, or Kallis' place in Test history, would confirm that they have merely moved from vis-à-vis encounters to cyberspace. I will, however, say that the present depersonalised dispensation is significantly better than the old days in one respect: nowadays, when you run into a troll online you just click another link and move on. Back then, the troll was your neighbour (or even closer home) and neither of you could escape the other quite so easily.

Sankaran Krishna is a professor of political science at the University of Hawaii, in Honolulu

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Kashi0127 on June 16, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    I had the privilege of watching all the six (Prasanna, Venkat, Pataudi, Venkat, Gavaskar, Vishwanath) and a few more (Chandra, Bedi, Solkar, Abid Ali). Most of these were excellent players and like the author pointed out their fielding ability or lack of it was questionable. However they were all a class act, particularly the players mentioned by the author. They got paid minuscule compared to what Dhoni and his men make, they had relatively no facilities to talk of, they were from generation where helmets and lots of protective gear did not exist, there were no strategists or dozens of automated tools and analysis.

    Sheer class I saw of Lloyd, Kallicharan, Richards, Roberts, Holder, Marshal, Garner against the India likes mentioned in the article , today's lot is no comparison and Dhoni's men including the top record holders appear like children compared to men of those years. Healthy rivalry apart, It was great to watch them... I SALUTE THEM ALL!!

  • imetpkd on June 18, 2014, 5:46 GMT

    The difference between Gavaskar and Vishwanath was , Vishwanath scored runs for his team when it mattered most on the other hand Gavaskar always scored runs whether you needed or not.

  • ashok16 on June 18, 2014, 2:00 GMT

    In my education days it was about which was the better test team, West Indies or Australia. The Aussie fans, including me, had to bide our time for a good ten years before the tide turned in our favor in the mid 90s.

  • on June 17, 2014, 17:48 GMT

    Best all round batsman in all formats- Sachin Tendulkar. Best wicketkeeper -batsman- Adam Gilchrist. Best Spinner- Shane Warne. Best fast bowler- Wasim Akram, Malcolm Marshall , Richard Hadlee. Best All rounder- Gary Sobers by a country mile.

  • samrao on June 17, 2014, 16:20 GMT

    Prasanna was vastly superior to Venkat in bowling though Venkat was a very good off-spinner himself (probably Prasanna is arguably the best off spinner ever, Venkat was a superior close cordon fielder, Venkat was considered a better bat but Prasanna played more important innings and has almost similarbatting statistics. Pataudi was a better captain but Wadekar enjoyed a very good run but was not a good leader. Gavaskar vs Vishy, a difficult choice . Gavaskar was more consistent & ambitious but Vishwanath was more attractive and played many match winning knocks . Gavaskar himself rated Vishwanath higher . When India won the Port of Spain test in 1976 chasing 406 runs , Sunny laid the solid foundation and Vishwanth (& Patel) scored rapidly to achieve the victory.

  • on June 17, 2014, 15:41 GMT

    Gavaskar and Prasanna, respectively. By a country mile.

    Venkat was a vastly overrated off-spinner. Comparing him to Prasanna is like comparing Brett Lee to Glenn McGrath.

    Vishy was my favorite batsman to watch, and his genius showed up on occasion. But those were far fewer in comparison to Gavaskar's who was more combative, professional, and technically sound player.

    Two make the India all-time XI, and there's a good reason for that. They were better.

  • Cool_Jeeves on June 17, 2014, 11:36 GMT

    Sunny is top of the heap. The most courageous batsman every produced by India. In the second half of his career he averaged only 43, but still out did his team mates (who were much more accomplished that his team mates in the first half of his career) in batting when the circumstances were difficult, e.g. in his last test.

  • haratheertham on June 17, 2014, 6:18 GMT

    Comparing Pat and wadekar as captains , Vishy and Sunny as Batsman, Prasanna and venkat as offies is like comparing Micheal Clarke with Musfiqur of B.D , Devilliers with Root of England ( Bcoz he just made a Double ton ) and Warne with Amit Mishra.

  • harshthakor on June 17, 2014, 5:45 GMT

    My list in order of players from different eras who are virtually on par are 1.Gavaskar/HUtton 2.Border/Dravid 3.Lillee/Marshall 4.Sobers/Lara(as a left -handed batsman purely) 5.Hadlee/Mcgrath 6.Alan Donald/Dale Steyn 7.Greg Chappell/Ricky Ponting 8.Tendulkar/Viv Richards 9.Ian Chappell/Steve Waugh 10..Mark Waugh/David Gower

  • harshthakor on June 17, 2014, 5:36 GMT

    The most vital question is whether comparisons are really fair.There are so many different qualities in batsmen or bowlers.Some may be supreme technically like Gavaskar,Hutton or Hanif Mohammad,some may posess divine grace like Zaheer Abbas,some may have innovative genius like Rohan Kanhai,some could murderously destroy attacks like Viv or Barry RichardsA certain category of batsmen were consistent match-winners like Viv Richards while another category were the ultimate performers in a crisis like Alan Border or Rahul Dravid..Some paceman were masters on bowler's paradises while others championed flat ,docile tracks.The likes of Akram and Marshall were outstandingly versatile while for control and consistency Hadlee and Mcgrath had no equals.

    Infact often even comparing Tendulkar with Lara or Wasim Akram with Glen Mcgrath. is unfair Lara posessed divine artistry and could turn games more at his peak while Sachin was more consistent and technically sound.

  • Kashi0127 on June 16, 2014, 2:38 GMT

    I had the privilege of watching all the six (Prasanna, Venkat, Pataudi, Venkat, Gavaskar, Vishwanath) and a few more (Chandra, Bedi, Solkar, Abid Ali). Most of these were excellent players and like the author pointed out their fielding ability or lack of it was questionable. However they were all a class act, particularly the players mentioned by the author. They got paid minuscule compared to what Dhoni and his men make, they had relatively no facilities to talk of, they were from generation where helmets and lots of protective gear did not exist, there were no strategists or dozens of automated tools and analysis.

    Sheer class I saw of Lloyd, Kallicharan, Richards, Roberts, Holder, Marshal, Garner against the India likes mentioned in the article , today's lot is no comparison and Dhoni's men including the top record holders appear like children compared to men of those years. Healthy rivalry apart, It was great to watch them... I SALUTE THEM ALL!!

  • imetpkd on June 18, 2014, 5:46 GMT

    The difference between Gavaskar and Vishwanath was , Vishwanath scored runs for his team when it mattered most on the other hand Gavaskar always scored runs whether you needed or not.

  • ashok16 on June 18, 2014, 2:00 GMT

    In my education days it was about which was the better test team, West Indies or Australia. The Aussie fans, including me, had to bide our time for a good ten years before the tide turned in our favor in the mid 90s.

  • on June 17, 2014, 17:48 GMT

    Best all round batsman in all formats- Sachin Tendulkar. Best wicketkeeper -batsman- Adam Gilchrist. Best Spinner- Shane Warne. Best fast bowler- Wasim Akram, Malcolm Marshall , Richard Hadlee. Best All rounder- Gary Sobers by a country mile.

  • samrao on June 17, 2014, 16:20 GMT

    Prasanna was vastly superior to Venkat in bowling though Venkat was a very good off-spinner himself (probably Prasanna is arguably the best off spinner ever, Venkat was a superior close cordon fielder, Venkat was considered a better bat but Prasanna played more important innings and has almost similarbatting statistics. Pataudi was a better captain but Wadekar enjoyed a very good run but was not a good leader. Gavaskar vs Vishy, a difficult choice . Gavaskar was more consistent & ambitious but Vishwanath was more attractive and played many match winning knocks . Gavaskar himself rated Vishwanath higher . When India won the Port of Spain test in 1976 chasing 406 runs , Sunny laid the solid foundation and Vishwanth (& Patel) scored rapidly to achieve the victory.

  • on June 17, 2014, 15:41 GMT

    Gavaskar and Prasanna, respectively. By a country mile.

    Venkat was a vastly overrated off-spinner. Comparing him to Prasanna is like comparing Brett Lee to Glenn McGrath.

    Vishy was my favorite batsman to watch, and his genius showed up on occasion. But those were far fewer in comparison to Gavaskar's who was more combative, professional, and technically sound player.

    Two make the India all-time XI, and there's a good reason for that. They were better.

  • Cool_Jeeves on June 17, 2014, 11:36 GMT

    Sunny is top of the heap. The most courageous batsman every produced by India. In the second half of his career he averaged only 43, but still out did his team mates (who were much more accomplished that his team mates in the first half of his career) in batting when the circumstances were difficult, e.g. in his last test.

  • haratheertham on June 17, 2014, 6:18 GMT

    Comparing Pat and wadekar as captains , Vishy and Sunny as Batsman, Prasanna and venkat as offies is like comparing Micheal Clarke with Musfiqur of B.D , Devilliers with Root of England ( Bcoz he just made a Double ton ) and Warne with Amit Mishra.

  • harshthakor on June 17, 2014, 5:45 GMT

    My list in order of players from different eras who are virtually on par are 1.Gavaskar/HUtton 2.Border/Dravid 3.Lillee/Marshall 4.Sobers/Lara(as a left -handed batsman purely) 5.Hadlee/Mcgrath 6.Alan Donald/Dale Steyn 7.Greg Chappell/Ricky Ponting 8.Tendulkar/Viv Richards 9.Ian Chappell/Steve Waugh 10..Mark Waugh/David Gower

  • harshthakor on June 17, 2014, 5:36 GMT

    The most vital question is whether comparisons are really fair.There are so many different qualities in batsmen or bowlers.Some may be supreme technically like Gavaskar,Hutton or Hanif Mohammad,some may posess divine grace like Zaheer Abbas,some may have innovative genius like Rohan Kanhai,some could murderously destroy attacks like Viv or Barry RichardsA certain category of batsmen were consistent match-winners like Viv Richards while another category were the ultimate performers in a crisis like Alan Border or Rahul Dravid..Some paceman were masters on bowler's paradises while others championed flat ,docile tracks.The likes of Akram and Marshall were outstandingly versatile while for control and consistency Hadlee and Mcgrath had no equals.

    Infact often even comparing Tendulkar with Lara or Wasim Akram with Glen Mcgrath. is unfair Lara posessed divine artistry and could turn games more at his peak while Sachin was more consistent and technically sound.

  • on June 16, 2014, 15:59 GMT

    A correction to Sunny's score in my earlier post, he declared with his personal score at 182 not out, not 173. Sunny was an unselfish player who did not put his personal stats above the team's good.

  • Vaughanographic on June 16, 2014, 14:54 GMT

    This is an interesting take on an ageless argument which goes beyond the indian cricket team and is in fact global.

    Muri vs Warne?

    Tendulkar vs Lara vs Kallis vs Sangakarra?

    Dale Steyn vs Dennis Lillee?

    One could carry on for ages.

  • henchart on June 16, 2014, 13:57 GMT

    I would rate Gavaskar a notch above GRV not because of mere centuries and runs but that Gavaskar faced a new cherry unlike GRV who came 2 down and quite a few times when Gavaskar ,Chauhan and Mohinder/Vengsarkar had blunted the sting of new ball.Having said that I must admit that India won almost everytime GRV scored a test ton.Same debate was extended to SRT and RD and I would rate RD's efforts a notch above SRT despite being less talented simply because he came 1 down to SRT's 2 down.Moreover RD did not have the luxury of openers of the class of Gavaskar or Chauhan preceding him.Sehwag and Gambhir came towards the fag end of RD's career.But overall who is the best batsman to have represented India? SRT.The best batsman in test history? Don Bradman.Most destructive batsman -Viv Richards.Most complete cricketer-Gary Sobers and Jacques Kallis.Deadly pacer-Dennis Lillee and Malcolm Marshall.Best spinner ever -Shane Warne .

  • on June 16, 2014, 13:38 GMT

    no doubt, it Gavaskar, he is living legend no one can come near his achievements,

  • ramli on June 16, 2014, 12:58 GMT

    Excellent reminiscences ... just brought back nostalgia ... "I don't think a single mind was changed in the course of these interminable debates" - Excellent

  • 9ST9 on June 16, 2014, 4:25 GMT

    @spinkingKK - VVS hands down if you don't just read the stats but watch him bat.

  • Kashi0127 on June 16, 2014, 3:01 GMT

    Agree with the author. The discussions, debates, arguments were much closer home than they are these days. The internet and associated technologies has made it less physical or less physically personal. My father and I had differences. He would argue to death about Gavaskar, Venkat, Pataudi and few more and I had my own heroes. The arguments would become so fierce we needed to be separated by other folks at home or friends for the fear something drastic might happen. It was so bad some folks at home complained "why there is so much cricket" which in reality was 2 test tours in three years (no ODI, no IPL...) :)

  • Kashi0127 on June 16, 2014, 2:47 GMT

    @spinkingKK There is no debate in your question. If it is class and/or winning matches one is interested in it is VVS Laxman. If it is piling up records and being a statisticians delight then it is Tendulkar

  • on June 16, 2014, 0:21 GMT

    I was a Vishy/Pras/Wadekar fan throughout. I used to think Sunny played for records until I saw him declare an Indian innings in Eden Gradens with his score on 173 n.o. in the 2nd innings to try and force a victory against WI in 1978. He would have been the only batsman to have scored twice a century and double century in a single match had he not declared. Interestingly I remember more of Vishy's 32 in that test that either of Sunny's centuries, such was Vishy's style.

  • on June 15, 2014, 16:19 GMT

    Give me Venkat I will win any XI was a statement By Sir Gary Sobers.

  • sushantsingh on June 15, 2014, 16:07 GMT

    Obvious choice: Vishy Pras Pataudi

    no doubt.......vishy a master bat, prassana the legendary offie and PATAUDI-- the best captain that India ever had.......

  • on June 15, 2014, 14:33 GMT

    Another debate of two Karnataka spinners - who is a better spinner Chandrasekhar or Kumble?

    Have noted Pataudi himself remarked somewhere that he will prefer Chandra to win matches - rather than Kumble, as Chandra was more of an attacking bowler.

  • IndianInnerEdge on June 15, 2014, 13:24 GMT

    Munaf Patel or Ashish Nehra, Zaheer Khan or Ashwin who would captain the Indian all time useless fielders XI?

  • spinkingKK on June 15, 2014, 12:00 GMT

    How about VVS Laxman or Sachin Tendulkar?

  • on June 15, 2014, 8:56 GMT

    This kind of debates will always continue I among the fans of this great game! For me it was Sunny and for my brother it was Vishyz! pras certainly scores over venky in terms of bowling ability. He was the greatest off spinner ever to have played in this game.!

  • harshthakor on June 15, 2014, 8:48 GMT

    My best duals in order of merit of players in contemporary eras are

    1.Alan Border/Javed Miandad 2.Imran Khan/Ian Botham 3.Michael Holding/Andy Roberts 4.Zaheer Abbas/Gundappa Vishwanath 5.Ted Dexter/Peter May 6.George Headley/Walter Hammond 7.Glen Mcgrath/Wasim Akram 8.Rahul Dravid/Ricky Ponting 9.Sachin Tendulkar/Brian Lara 10.Geoff Boycott/Graham Gooch

  • harshthakor on June 15, 2014, 8:40 GMT

    At his best I would rate Vishy ahead of Sunny,who posessed more natural talent.Vishwanath was the equivalent of a musician or a magician to the art of batting .He overshadowed Gavaskar as a match-winner.However Sunil's trump card was his temperament and mental strength in addition to great technique.Arguably he could be rated the best test batsmen of all if you consider his scores against the best bowling attacks.Overall Sunny would win my vote with his greater consistency and longevity.Both could master bad wickets but in the end Gavaskar's 221 at the Oval and 96 at Bangalore v Pakistan won him the verdict.

    Some batsmen have been match-winners like Viv Richards or Ricky Ponting,others have championed a crisis like Alan Border or Rahul Dravid.Some have championed bad wickets like George Headley or Victor Trumper while others have relished good batting tracks like Wally Hammond or even Don Bradman. Certain bowlers have relished green tops while others have championed dead wickets.

  • harshthakor on June 15, 2014, 8:31 GMT

    Infact arguably few sports have such scope of debate with regards to comparisons as Cricket as statistics do not merely measure a player's greatness.An athelete or swimmer can be measured by timing but cricket is not only about averages and scores or wickets.It is an art more than anything.Infact at times comparisons were like evaluating chalk with Cheese.Imagine comparing Viv Richards with Sunil Gavaskar or Dennis Lillee with Richard Hadlee.These players have entirely contrasting qualities and styles.Many players with lesser batting averages or higher bowling averages were considered better than their contemporaries.Peter May or Ted Dexter were rated above Ken Barrington while Graham Gooch was rated ahead of Geoff Boycott.Some rated Rohan Kanhai ahead of Gary Sobers as a batsman and Ian Chappell.ahead of brother Greg.

    Vishy was the master of touch art the equivalent of a musican to batting while Gavaskar was like a technician .Rolled into one they would make the perfect batsman.

  • mk49_van on June 15, 2014, 6:39 GMT

    Sunny and Pras - no question!

  • mk49_van on June 15, 2014, 6:39 GMT

    Sunny and Pras - no question!

  • harshthakor on June 15, 2014, 8:31 GMT

    Infact arguably few sports have such scope of debate with regards to comparisons as Cricket as statistics do not merely measure a player's greatness.An athelete or swimmer can be measured by timing but cricket is not only about averages and scores or wickets.It is an art more than anything.Infact at times comparisons were like evaluating chalk with Cheese.Imagine comparing Viv Richards with Sunil Gavaskar or Dennis Lillee with Richard Hadlee.These players have entirely contrasting qualities and styles.Many players with lesser batting averages or higher bowling averages were considered better than their contemporaries.Peter May or Ted Dexter were rated above Ken Barrington while Graham Gooch was rated ahead of Geoff Boycott.Some rated Rohan Kanhai ahead of Gary Sobers as a batsman and Ian Chappell.ahead of brother Greg.

    Vishy was the master of touch art the equivalent of a musican to batting while Gavaskar was like a technician .Rolled into one they would make the perfect batsman.

  • harshthakor on June 15, 2014, 8:40 GMT

    At his best I would rate Vishy ahead of Sunny,who posessed more natural talent.Vishwanath was the equivalent of a musician or a magician to the art of batting .He overshadowed Gavaskar as a match-winner.However Sunil's trump card was his temperament and mental strength in addition to great technique.Arguably he could be rated the best test batsmen of all if you consider his scores against the best bowling attacks.Overall Sunny would win my vote with his greater consistency and longevity.Both could master bad wickets but in the end Gavaskar's 221 at the Oval and 96 at Bangalore v Pakistan won him the verdict.

    Some batsmen have been match-winners like Viv Richards or Ricky Ponting,others have championed a crisis like Alan Border or Rahul Dravid.Some have championed bad wickets like George Headley or Victor Trumper while others have relished good batting tracks like Wally Hammond or even Don Bradman. Certain bowlers have relished green tops while others have championed dead wickets.

  • harshthakor on June 15, 2014, 8:48 GMT

    My best duals in order of merit of players in contemporary eras are

    1.Alan Border/Javed Miandad 2.Imran Khan/Ian Botham 3.Michael Holding/Andy Roberts 4.Zaheer Abbas/Gundappa Vishwanath 5.Ted Dexter/Peter May 6.George Headley/Walter Hammond 7.Glen Mcgrath/Wasim Akram 8.Rahul Dravid/Ricky Ponting 9.Sachin Tendulkar/Brian Lara 10.Geoff Boycott/Graham Gooch

  • on June 15, 2014, 8:56 GMT

    This kind of debates will always continue I among the fans of this great game! For me it was Sunny and for my brother it was Vishyz! pras certainly scores over venky in terms of bowling ability. He was the greatest off spinner ever to have played in this game.!

  • spinkingKK on June 15, 2014, 12:00 GMT

    How about VVS Laxman or Sachin Tendulkar?

  • IndianInnerEdge on June 15, 2014, 13:24 GMT

    Munaf Patel or Ashish Nehra, Zaheer Khan or Ashwin who would captain the Indian all time useless fielders XI?

  • on June 15, 2014, 14:33 GMT

    Another debate of two Karnataka spinners - who is a better spinner Chandrasekhar or Kumble?

    Have noted Pataudi himself remarked somewhere that he will prefer Chandra to win matches - rather than Kumble, as Chandra was more of an attacking bowler.

  • sushantsingh on June 15, 2014, 16:07 GMT

    Obvious choice: Vishy Pras Pataudi

    no doubt.......vishy a master bat, prassana the legendary offie and PATAUDI-- the best captain that India ever had.......

  • on June 15, 2014, 16:19 GMT

    Give me Venkat I will win any XI was a statement By Sir Gary Sobers.