Virender Sehwag's 100th Test

'Is he bowling or begging?'

Some of the most fun things in cricket are either said by Sehwag or about him. Here's a collection

Sidharth Monga

November 22, 2012

Comments: 60 | Text size: A | A

Paul Harris falls flat as Virender Sehwag marches on, India v South Africa, 1st Test, Chennai, 3rd day, March 28, 2008
'Come round the wicket and first ball I'll hit you for a six' © Getty Images
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By Sehwag

"Yeh bowling kar raha hai ya bheekh maang raha hai? [Is he bowling or begging?]"
To Pakistan close-in fielders after Shoaib Akhtar's continuous sledging, asking Sehwag to hook. Even Shoaib's team-mates couldn't keep from laughing. Multan, 2003-04

"I was batting on 291 at Chepauk, against South Africa. I told Paul Harris: 'Come round the wicket and first ball I'll hit you for a six.' He accepted my challenge and the very first ball I hit him for a straight six, and there was a long-off, long-on, deep midwicket and a deep point. I was so tired and he was bowling on the pads and I was getting bored. So rather than spending 10-15 minutes to get to the triple-century I gave him good advice."
On Paul Harris. Chennai, 2008

"They are bowling into my body, and I'm playing my hook and flick shots to get boundaries. There is no other [effective] way they can bowl to me."
On New Zealand bowlers, whom he admitted to feeling sorry for. Hamilton, 2008-09

"Boycott can say what he wants. He once batted the whole day and hit just one four." On Geoff Boycott, who had referred to him as "talented but brainless"

"No, I don't know anything about them. I haven't even heard about them."
On Vinoo Mankad and Pankaj Roy after narrowly missing their world record for the highest opening partnership in Tests. Lahore, 2005-06

"Our bank balance."
When asked for 343867th time what was the difference between him and Sachin Tendulkar

"It's soft, but that's the way we are."
On his decision to withdraw the appeal for mankading against Lahiru Thirimanne. Brisbane, 2011-12

"Ball ka ghar hai boundary, wahan usay pahunchao [The ball lives beyond that boundary, keep sending it there]" In an advert series titled "Sehwag Ke Thande Funde" [Sehwag's cool fundas]

"In the dressing room they told me I was hitting the good balls too, but if you look at it my way, I hit only the bad ones." On his 284 not out in less than a day. Brabourne Stadium, 2009-10

"No, there is no danger. We are the most dangerous batsmen in the world."
To security people in Durban who insisted he and Gautam Gambhir not walk out on their own late in the evening

"Obviously when you are on 94, you can get there with just a six."
To Paddy Upton and Eric Simons on what advice he gave VVS Laxman when he was on 94. Sehwag was running for the injured Laxman. P Sara Oval, 2010

"We have to work hard to take 20 English wickets. They are not Bangladesh."
On England; his appraisal of Bangladesh hadn't changed. Ahmedabad, 2012-13

On Sehwag

"The best way to know how Virender Sehwag's mind works is to sit next to him in the players' balcony when India are batting. Every few minutes he will clutch his head and yell, "Chauka gaya" or "Chhakka gaya". That's his way of expressing disappointment at somebody's failure to take advantage of a ball that he thought deserved to be hit for four or six. That's how he thinks, in fours and sixes."
Sourav Ganguly, in a Wisden Asia Cricket piece

"Jeremy Snape told me a great story about him while we were working together in the Indian Premier League. Sehwag and Snape were batting for Leicestershire against Middlesex when Abdul Razzaq started reverse-swinging the ball in the way that the Pakistan bowlers do. Sehwag came up to Snape and said: 'We must lose this ball. I have a plan.' Next over, he whacked that ball clean out of the ground, forcing the umpires to pick another from the box that would obviously not reverse straight away. To which Sehwag said: 'We are all right for one hour.' Smart, I say."
Shane Warne, in his list of his top 100 cricketers

"Just had a bowlers' meeting. The area of the pitch we're supposed to land it on against Sehwag is about two millimetres by two millimetres."
Stuart Clark about his preparation before the Super Test

"Well, we talked about not playing rash strokes. Of course, he hears me but I'm not sure if he ever listens." Sachin Tendulkar on the advice he gave when Sehwag was on 295 in Multan

"It's very frustrating, especially after you have batted the way I did, making it look hard for five hours, and then he comes out and smacks it everywhere."
Australia wicketkeeper Tim Paine ponders if his struggle to score 92 off 196 was worth it after watching Sehwag loot 59 off 54 on the same pitch. Mohali, 2010-11

"Sehwag can change the course of a match with the ease of Moses parting the Red Sea."
Ian Chappell says Sehwag can put the fear of god in bowlers

"I would think 'Abhi out hua, abhi out hua [He looks like he is going to get out soon]', and suddenly he would be 100 in 100 balls."
Harbhajan Singh on bowling to Sehwag in junior cricket

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (November 24, 2012, 15:58 GMT)

For all those guys who are berating Sehwag on this forum, for example Darshan Dias Abeysinghe, lets just say that you guys are not able to appreciate the joy which a guy like Sehwag brings to the genuine cricket lover. Forget for a moment the digging into averages, the debates about being effective in all conditions etc. Just concentrate on the pure joy of seeing bat swing and the ball rushing past backward point to the boundary, and the fear which he instilled in bowlers around the world with his fearless approach. Sehwag has made the game of cricket richer. I will stick my neck out to say that because people come to the grounds to watch him play! With due respect, then, I rest my case.

Posted by   on (November 24, 2012, 5:34 GMT)

@Malboro19 First of all india is NOT a subcontinent, second I never said Pakistan, India and SL have the same pitch. However, Sehwag being an opening batsman faces fast bowling and in India, SL and Pakistan the ball does not swing as much as other parts of the world. SO he is able to play with freedom. He averages 91 in PAK, 58 in India, and 69 in Sri Lanka. All 3 countries which are known to be dead for fast bowlers. Pakistan have great fast bowlers but not helpful wickets. On the other hand Sehwag averages 20 in New Zealand, 28 in England 25 in South Africa. This shows a weakness against the swinging ball or helpful conditions. Point out to me a great batsman who averages in the 20s in 3 countries before you call Sehwag great. And as you said "average" is a weighted term.. heavily weighted in this case by 91 in pakistan all statisticians would call that an "outlier" which heavily distorts his "away" average

Posted by   on (November 23, 2012, 15:21 GMT)

Sehwag is a HERO! Period.

Posted by ooper_cut on (November 23, 2012, 11:51 GMT)

Hi ALL This is not an article about Sehwag's greatness with his bat, this is about his humour and casual attitude to everything. So please read and enjoy, if you cannot leave.

Posted by   on (November 23, 2012, 11:38 GMT)

Very nice collection of Statements..

Posted by   on (November 23, 2012, 10:23 GMT)

"Beware bowlers I'm back" - This was the comment I've seen when he came back to team recovered from out of form. Dauntless opener smashed the ball round the corner of ground without hesitancy in the first match of his recall.

Open-mindedly he play shots which is a real treat for all his fans in all format of cricket.

We wish you all the best sehwag.....

Posted by   on (November 23, 2012, 5:53 GMT)

Amazing article... Specially the Jeremy Snape story was hilarious :) Only Viru could think of such a plan :)

Posted by 9ST9 on (November 23, 2012, 4:05 GMT)

@CricketMaan - just to refresh your memory : the 200 in Galle was during the series in 2008. Mendis picked up 10 in that game and 8 in the next (he picked up 8 in the first test as well) and became man of the series , that was just the beginning of Mendis's career. Shewag's knock was so special since it was a low scoring game. India made something like 350 or so and 200 of it was from sehwag hence he single handedly won the test for India - but they lost the 1st and 3rd tests and lost the series 2-1 That series if i remember right was the first to have the DRS .

Posted by Sunman81 on (November 23, 2012, 3:41 GMT)

Sehwagism seems better than Sidhuism...Humour comes out when your mind is relaxed... with a relaxed mind you can really perform... looks like this is the secret behind is success... I wish he plays many more memorable innings in future :)

Posted by Satadru145 on (November 23, 2012, 3:29 GMT)

Firstly, Sehwag is the man who injected fresh stream of life into Test Cricket, hence brought back spectators and made test Cricket a spectacle to watch. He redefined the opening role and has been definitely the greatest ever since. Secondly, Sehwag definitely has that rustic honesty which is rather refreshing to hear! People who carry their hearts on their sleeves are rare to find these days. Lets just find a place in our hearts for people like him. Thirdly, this one is for those who believe Sehwag is a home-pitch hero. 105 on debut in SA, 106 vs Eng at Trent Bridge, 195 vs Aus at MCG, 151 vs Aus at Adelaide, 180 vs Windes at Windies, 200 vs SL at Galle (finished Mendis career), 309 vs Pak in Multan (finished Saqlain's career), 254 vs Pak in Lahore. Now agreed that Sehwag has a 13 more home average than away. Then again, Mahela has same of 22, Sangakara has of 20, Michael Clarke has of 25. So if they are great players, Sehwag is definitely much greater player.

Congratulations Viru

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