April 27, 2012

The epitome of selfless striving

Chanderpaul has embodied many of the most important, least appreciated qualities demanded by his complex profession
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The ugliest batsman of them all? The most anonymous top-rank cricketer ever? The most patient, obstinate, cussed, indomitable, atypical sportsman of the third millennium? The ultimate limpet? Shivnarine Chanderpaul may well tick all those boxes. What's not to love?

The smile is as sweet as the sugar from his native Demerara, the eyes a gentle Asiatic brown, the physique and body language about as menacing as Mickey Mouse in pyjamas. Behind such frail and uncommonly deceptive features, though, lies a focus of burnished steel, the sort of concentration and aversion to risk normally found among chess grandmasters, and a heart to turn even Aslan green. Even Aslan as played by Liam Neeson.

In the greater scheme of things, in a world so addicted to hasty, thoughtless judgements that the words "exaggeration" and "hype" apparently require the prefix "over" for us to understand them, and "great" no longer has any meaning whatsoever (in a qualitative sense), becoming the tenth batsman to stockpile 10,000 Test runs may not sound all that much to write home about. That only five men have reached 50 more often sounds a bit better, but placing him in the middle ranks of a generation responsible for more than a dozen of the game's hungriest run aggregators, it is easy, too easy, to forget how the one-man band from Unity Village has embodied so many of the most important, least appreciated qualities demanded by his complex profession. And entertained us royally in the process.

Not that words of that ilk sit comfortably on those narrow yet brick-like shoulders. Here, after all, is a chap about as likely to profess a desire to entertain as Mel Gibson is to proclaim his love of all things Yiddish. He also guards his privacy as a lioness does her cubs. Even calling him "Shiv" feels like over-familiarity, even an intrusion (forgive me, Shiv). So little does the wider world know about him, the only story anyone beyond the Caribbean ever seems to remember about his life away from the stumps is that he once mistook a policeman for an intruder and shot him - albeit only, thankfully, in the hand. Still, if ever a single tale personified a man's character, that one assuredly did. Here is a bloke who exudes defiance from every pore, who drinks adversity by the pint and emits resistance with every breath.

All the more reason, then, to look back in askance at the reputation he once endured. As he sought to establish himself, and struggled to convert half-centuries into the full monty, a tendency to miss games prompted the scurrilous observation that he was a hypochondriac. Then, in 2000, six years after his Test debut, a sizeable lump of floating bone was removed from one of his feet: comfort begat substance, and an end to the gossip and besmirching.

You want persistence, stickability, dependability and sod-artistic-impression singlemindedness? Send for Shiv. The notion of surviving 1000 minutes at the crease without being unglued is one so alien to contemporary mindsets as to be almost unthinkable; he's done it four times. Against India in 2002, he went an unprecedented 1513 minutes between dismissals - nearly 26 hours. Statistics, by and large, may be allergic to truth, but if a number can ever be said to define a man, that stat defines Shiv.

That said, there are plenty more where that came from, each one testimony to that inner and outer Horatio. Not for 15 years has his Test average stood as tall as it does now. In just three of his last 13 innings has he failed to reach 47. Since Brian Lara retired from Tests in December 2006, he has spent around 170 hours nudging, nurdling, carving, creaming and annoying the hell out of West Indies' opponents; his most dutiful team-mate, Chris Gayle, has managed 100 hours fewer. Shiv's average over those 39 Tests has been 66.38; nobody else who has taken guard for West Indies five times or more comes within 15 of that.

It is therefore something of a shock to discover that there have been eight knocks this century alone more time-consuming than his 675-minute vigil against India in that 2002 series (his lone ten-hour sojourn). Then again, when you consider his comparatively lowly rung in the order - nearly half of his 239 innings have been essayed from No. 5 or below - and the flighty approach and fragile temperaments of his colleagues, it makes complete sense.

There has, of course, been far more to him than a degree in stubbornness. If there's one Test innings I could have watched but didn't, it would have to be Lara's 277 in Sydney in 1992; the next would be Chanderpaul's 69-ball ton against Australia in Georgetown nine springs ago, the fourth-most rapid in five-day annals. A more sheerly aggressive onslaught than anything Botham, Gayle, Kapil or Jessop ever mustered. In ODIs he averages 41-plus, more than Desmond Haynes, Sourav Ganguly, Clive Lloyd, Mark Waugh and yes, even Lara. Among those with 7000-plus runs, that mean ranks him behind only Jacques Kallis, Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Sourav Ganguly and Mohammad Yousuf.

Does he have enough stamina, focus and desire to gather the near-2000 runs he needs to overhaul Lara as the West Indies' most insatiable hunter-gatherer? Part of me recoils at the very idea. The artisan supplanting the artist? Yet there's something deliciously appealing about such a prospect

Pulling rabbits out of that over-roomy helmet has long been a stock-in-trade. In East London in 1999, on a tour so otherwise miserable that the other 11 internationals were all lost, against a South African attack boasting Shaun Pollock, Lance Klusener, Kallis and the grievously underrated Nicky Boje, he clouted 150 off 136 balls, sharing a West Indies record all-wicket stand of 226 with Carl Hooper during which he outscored, out-hit and out-entertained his partner. Not a claim many have been able to make about a liaison with Cool Carl at his best.

Then came yesterday in Dominica. Aware as he was of that impending date with destiny, not to mention the virtual impossibility of chasing 370 on a pitch so delightful for spinners that even Michael Clarke was proving deadly, he set about his innings with an urgency utterly at odds with stereotype and expectation. That his co-defier was Darren Bravo, the Lara clone supreme, and that he matched the young gunner stroke for stroke, only served to underline his peerless adaptability.

Nor did he slacken much as the close drew closer. At 45 for 3, team, match and series had been dead in the water; at 173 for 4, in the day's final over, Roseau could relish the possibility of a minor miracle, and a night of fantasy. Then came Clarke's killer thrust. Would the third umpire be so ruthlessly unromantic as to overturn Tony Hill's not-out verdict? Sadly, yes. It dimmed the glow not a jot. It was as if Shiv had strapped on his pads and resolved, as he had never resolved before, to refute, in one innings, every disparaging comment ever made about his technique and philosophy, while remaining as bent as ever on challenging and changing the momentum of the contest. Has the game ever known a more evenly split personality?

One question lingers, a small but irresistibly tempting one. He turns 38 in August: does he have, can he possibly have, enough stamina, focus and desire in the tank to gather the near-2000 runs he needs to overhaul Lara as the West Indies' most insatiable hunter-gatherer? Part of me recoils at the very idea. The crabbiest unseating the stylist? The artisan supplanting the artist? Yet there's something deliciously appealing about such a prospect, however horrendously guilty one feels to make such a confession.

In decades to come, Wisden readers will check out the 2013 edition, the 150th, look down the list of Test cricket's foremost run-hewers (not terribly far down, admittedly), see "S Chanderpaul" and note, perhaps, that he was one of those rare chaps without a middle name. The more perceptive and curious might also blink their eyes, crank up the microchip calculator embedded in their right earlobe and work out that his ratio of not-outs to innings (38 in 238 at the end of the first dig in Roseau) bows the knee only to those of Allan Border and Steve Waugh, so long the twin last words in they-shall-not-pass imperturbability.

What they probably won't appreciate is what Shiv meant to cricket in the early 2000s, to the Twenty20 era, and what he symbolised. With Rahul Dravid having vacated the stage, he is now the last bastion of selfless striving and noble doggedness, the very epitome of unfashionability and unvanity. His greatest legacy could be to inspire a retrenchment of such values. Or to stiffen the sinews of those too fearful to plough their own lonely furrow.

Rob Steen is a sportswriter and senior lecturer in sports journalism at the University of Brighton

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • chuckme on April 30, 2012, 11:26 GMT

    those w.i. commentators who are always restrained in thair preise of chanderpaul and would not realise he is one of the GREATS.. must be eating crow ..the man do not need confirmation ...he is letting his bat and the world do the talking for him...sad at the double standards.....Shiv keep on showing the nay sayers ESPECIALLY otis and the w.i. board.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on April 29, 2012, 22:43 GMT

    Wonderful tributes to Shiv from everybody. Big up to Chris P and swingit for quoting me :-). Chris, my user name is Dravid_Gravitas not David :-).

  • WIlover on April 29, 2012, 17:17 GMT

    I remember many years ago, my wife's nephew Neil Weekes who played youth cricket for Barbados, having told me after returning from a tournament in Guyana.." Uncle Ray there is a young guyanease batsman named Shivnarine Chanderpaul whom we could not get out at all...he will surely play for the W I and I bet you that he will score a lot of runs." After seeing Shiv bat for the first time, I was glad that I did not make that bet. Neil you were spot on. Let's hope that we see at least a few more great innings from this great cricketer!!

  • on April 29, 2012, 16:41 GMT

    Chanderpaul's example is a good one to follow. The first thing is that he loves batting & in order to bat you have to stay at the crease. No batsmen has ever made a run when back in the pavilion. It is obvious that Shiv isn't the most talented or gifted batsman However what what he lacks in talent & gifted-ness in stroke-play he makes up for that & some by practicing in the nets hard long & often. One does not just over night acquire his immense levels of concentration. It takes repeated effort & it takes time. If batsmen like Bravo , Powell & co would follow his example they will be better off in the future. A prime example happened last year when before Kirk Edwards made his debut @ Dominica he was seen conversing with Dravid during the 2nd test @ Kensington Oval. I am almost sure what Dravid & Kirk were speaking about helped him during his century on debut

  • on April 29, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    A very well written article and a great tribute to one of the greatest to ever play the game.....as a West Indian i am very proud to read such a tribute to the backbone of west indies. He has defied all odds and has proven time after time that he a true warrior and embodies the spirit of test cricket and what its all about. Well done Chanders!!!!! Will always be one of favourites and definitely a West Indian legend!

  • Swingit on April 29, 2012, 6:57 GMT

    I join the chorus of my dear friend Dravid_Gravitas, in saying to Shiv "take a bow". Like my other hero Dravid this is a player I would ALWAYS pick in my test starting 11. It would be a sheer nightmare for opponents to have the Wall Dravid and the fortress Tigerpaul on the same team, or worse: at the crease together! I can hear bowlers the world over planning their retirement at that thought.

  • DaisonGarvasis on April 29, 2012, 6:38 GMT

    One thing Shiv WILL NOT impose on you when he come out to bat is FEAR. But then he doesn't go away from your face. He stay there until you drop and when you wake up he will still be there. And then to add to your frustration he will try odd stance while the the bowler runs in to bowl and you will hope "with that stance he is gonna be out soon" but he will be there for a long time and he will grind you.

  • Chris_P on April 29, 2012, 1:18 GMT

    Agree David Gravitas. For Shiv to have performed in this manner, in a team that was clearly out of its depth in recent times marks more than simple grit & determination (which he had by bucketfuls btw). He was extremely talented in a brittle batting lineup so his method of playing was different to Dravid's. From my understanding of the many of the articles written by Steve Waugh's men, his wicket was the most prized, as it prompted great consternation among the rest of the "mortals" (Lara aside). He was always greatly respected & appreciated by both the Aussie players & public, a rarity in itself.

  • boingo on April 28, 2012, 22:36 GMT

    LEGEND!! I travelled from Australia to watch the first 2 Tests and was so wishing that he got to 10,000 in Trinidad. I was scheduled to fly out after the 2nd Test but got ill and was able to see the 1st Innings of the 3rd Test on TV in Trinidad. I was on the plane home when he reached 10,000 and was bitterly disappointed. The only saving grace was that I saw him make a Test Century live in Barbados and a 94 in Trinidad. Long live the King Chanderpaul.

  • rg66 on April 28, 2012, 22:23 GMT

    Remarkably well written article on one of the truly remarkable talents still playing on a West Indies team beset by shoddy administration and an ever increasing erosion of all the elements that once melded these Caribbean/South American countries into being a formidable force in the ultimate game, Cricket. Not withstanding his 'Little Engine That Could' approach to the game, part of what makes Chanderpaul truly a great player, is the patience he has employed navigating the political and economic minefield that has destroyed West Indian unity and its Cricket over the years, to achieve what he has to date. His dogged determination to never quit, along with his skill with a bat gives fans of West Indies Cricket a brief glimpse of what our players used to be.. true sporting warriors who played for regional pride before all else. Well done on the 10K mark Chanderpaul and well written Steen.

  • chuckme on April 30, 2012, 11:26 GMT

    those w.i. commentators who are always restrained in thair preise of chanderpaul and would not realise he is one of the GREATS.. must be eating crow ..the man do not need confirmation ...he is letting his bat and the world do the talking for him...sad at the double standards.....Shiv keep on showing the nay sayers ESPECIALLY otis and the w.i. board.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on April 29, 2012, 22:43 GMT

    Wonderful tributes to Shiv from everybody. Big up to Chris P and swingit for quoting me :-). Chris, my user name is Dravid_Gravitas not David :-).

  • WIlover on April 29, 2012, 17:17 GMT

    I remember many years ago, my wife's nephew Neil Weekes who played youth cricket for Barbados, having told me after returning from a tournament in Guyana.." Uncle Ray there is a young guyanease batsman named Shivnarine Chanderpaul whom we could not get out at all...he will surely play for the W I and I bet you that he will score a lot of runs." After seeing Shiv bat for the first time, I was glad that I did not make that bet. Neil you were spot on. Let's hope that we see at least a few more great innings from this great cricketer!!

  • on April 29, 2012, 16:41 GMT

    Chanderpaul's example is a good one to follow. The first thing is that he loves batting & in order to bat you have to stay at the crease. No batsmen has ever made a run when back in the pavilion. It is obvious that Shiv isn't the most talented or gifted batsman However what what he lacks in talent & gifted-ness in stroke-play he makes up for that & some by practicing in the nets hard long & often. One does not just over night acquire his immense levels of concentration. It takes repeated effort & it takes time. If batsmen like Bravo , Powell & co would follow his example they will be better off in the future. A prime example happened last year when before Kirk Edwards made his debut @ Dominica he was seen conversing with Dravid during the 2nd test @ Kensington Oval. I am almost sure what Dravid & Kirk were speaking about helped him during his century on debut

  • on April 29, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    A very well written article and a great tribute to one of the greatest to ever play the game.....as a West Indian i am very proud to read such a tribute to the backbone of west indies. He has defied all odds and has proven time after time that he a true warrior and embodies the spirit of test cricket and what its all about. Well done Chanders!!!!! Will always be one of favourites and definitely a West Indian legend!

  • Swingit on April 29, 2012, 6:57 GMT

    I join the chorus of my dear friend Dravid_Gravitas, in saying to Shiv "take a bow". Like my other hero Dravid this is a player I would ALWAYS pick in my test starting 11. It would be a sheer nightmare for opponents to have the Wall Dravid and the fortress Tigerpaul on the same team, or worse: at the crease together! I can hear bowlers the world over planning their retirement at that thought.

  • DaisonGarvasis on April 29, 2012, 6:38 GMT

    One thing Shiv WILL NOT impose on you when he come out to bat is FEAR. But then he doesn't go away from your face. He stay there until you drop and when you wake up he will still be there. And then to add to your frustration he will try odd stance while the the bowler runs in to bowl and you will hope "with that stance he is gonna be out soon" but he will be there for a long time and he will grind you.

  • Chris_P on April 29, 2012, 1:18 GMT

    Agree David Gravitas. For Shiv to have performed in this manner, in a team that was clearly out of its depth in recent times marks more than simple grit & determination (which he had by bucketfuls btw). He was extremely talented in a brittle batting lineup so his method of playing was different to Dravid's. From my understanding of the many of the articles written by Steve Waugh's men, his wicket was the most prized, as it prompted great consternation among the rest of the "mortals" (Lara aside). He was always greatly respected & appreciated by both the Aussie players & public, a rarity in itself.

  • boingo on April 28, 2012, 22:36 GMT

    LEGEND!! I travelled from Australia to watch the first 2 Tests and was so wishing that he got to 10,000 in Trinidad. I was scheduled to fly out after the 2nd Test but got ill and was able to see the 1st Innings of the 3rd Test on TV in Trinidad. I was on the plane home when he reached 10,000 and was bitterly disappointed. The only saving grace was that I saw him make a Test Century live in Barbados and a 94 in Trinidad. Long live the King Chanderpaul.

  • rg66 on April 28, 2012, 22:23 GMT

    Remarkably well written article on one of the truly remarkable talents still playing on a West Indies team beset by shoddy administration and an ever increasing erosion of all the elements that once melded these Caribbean/South American countries into being a formidable force in the ultimate game, Cricket. Not withstanding his 'Little Engine That Could' approach to the game, part of what makes Chanderpaul truly a great player, is the patience he has employed navigating the political and economic minefield that has destroyed West Indian unity and its Cricket over the years, to achieve what he has to date. His dogged determination to never quit, along with his skill with a bat gives fans of West Indies Cricket a brief glimpse of what our players used to be.. true sporting warriors who played for regional pride before all else. Well done on the 10K mark Chanderpaul and well written Steen.

  • on April 28, 2012, 22:09 GMT

    He goes about his business like a blacksmith on his anvil not wanting name or fame but only that the final product should be perfect. It is this desire to seek perfection that he has long joined the ranks of the truly 'great'. Never has a West Indian cricketer, or from other lands for that matter, personify grit and determination as Shiv had done for these many years. Perhaps the most enduring memory of this was when he was hit in the head by Brett Lee. Shiv got up dusted himself and went on to make a century for his country. Long may the tiger prowl and may his stripes never fade. Well played, sir!

  • on April 28, 2012, 21:27 GMT

    The poetry of the article itself is worth remembering just like that 50 Chanders made in partnership with Ambrose who then bowled out England out for 46. The story of his life....always overshadowed by the brand name (in this case Ambrose and quite often Lara). Those of us who were at QPO that afternoon saw the grit of the youth then and knew great things were in store for him if ever the selectors would pick him ahead of Keith Arthurton (that word selectors again!) who had to make a succession of ducks in both formats before they would pick Chanders even though he was scoring hundreds and a tipple hundred against J'ca (the best team at the time). And lastly, forget the ugly processes that go into the execution of the shot but focus on the shot itself; his cover drive and straight drive are as pleasing as anyone's.

  • on April 28, 2012, 20:42 GMT

    Chanderpaul is a great player. He is one of the best batsman for WEST Indies. I wish him all the success in his remaining career.

  • on April 28, 2012, 20:26 GMT

    A great servant of West Indies cricket.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on April 28, 2012, 20:15 GMT

    @Admo, I disagree with you to some extent. Not just Dravid but Shiv is also gifted and talented. It's their no frills approach that makes others perceive them as 'not' gifted or talented as other pretenders. For ex: Shiv's ability to be aggressive was questioned by the 'knowledgeable' critics but not by any ardent followers of cricket nor his team-mates. His century of 60 odd balls is testimony to his dexterity. Batsmen have roles to fill. The team members know that. Not playing to the gallery doesn't mean they don't have it in them to be flamboyant. It's just that there's nobody in the team who can take the role of a defiant soldier. It's just that there's nobody in the team who have as many gears in their armoury as these Legends. Dravid, Shiv and Kallis are the triumverate who filled those most difficult roles for their teams. Playing defiant knocks is no tiddly-winks and not everyones cup of tea. Goes to show the level of their skills, technique and the inborn talent they possess.

  • Admo on April 28, 2012, 19:45 GMT

    Shiv was undoubtedly the most formidable 'opponent' - Lara or Mark Waugh ceased to be behind a point, their batting became an object of art to be admired than an enemy to be countered. That is the feeling he induced in most people, I guess.

    But comparing him to Rahul Dravid is patently unjust. For Dravid arguably had the most elegant technique in the world - be it stroke-making, defense or even leaving the ball. Dravid was gifted - Shiv isn't - thats why his batting or rather battling achievements are all the more surprising.

  • crikectfan on April 28, 2012, 19:04 GMT

    Great article, really a deserving tribute to one of the recent greats. Sadly, Shiv will never be recognized by many as a modern day great. Congrats Shiv on 10, 000!

  • tappee74 on April 28, 2012, 18:49 GMT

    As i read this article,i became emotionally caught up.This is great writing from a great writer,one who describes the feats of a heavenly legend with precise timing of events .I enjoyed reading this essay which pillars a mountain of facts.I had the rare privilege of playing softball cricket with Chanderpaul in Florida.This man is the epitome of simplicity and kindness.If you have no idea of who he is,you would find it hard to identify him if he not batting or playing cricket.Shiv Chanderpaul is a towering inferno that glows from heaven above.May God continue to bless him.

  • harikeshan on April 28, 2012, 18:27 GMT

    Great Article Rob and finally the spotlight is on Shiv. You summed it all up and if I may add, with all this mayhem and hype surrounding the modern game he is often the covert operative who slips under the radar unnoticed. Epitome of concentration, does not seek accolades, fame and fortune. may not have style and finesse like some of the modern game according to the purists by his method is darn effective and the numbers speak for themselves. Wishing you all the Best Shiv Chanderpaul and many more great achievement filled seasons to come.

  • bzzd on April 28, 2012, 17:49 GMT

    Great to see all the positive comments about Chanderpaul. He has followed a lonely road of excellence while the Windies endured their terrible slump. It would be a fine thing for him in the twilight of his career, if some of the younger players start fulfilling their potential. Great tribute, Mr Steen.

  • AMOR on April 28, 2012, 16:55 GMT

    Congradulations to Shiv. He has been one against the rest for many years now. He alone carried West Indies cricket and did it with class and pizazz, never flinching, never giving up. Great job Shiv!!!

  • on April 28, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    Truly a modern day great and probably the last of his breed

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on April 28, 2012, 14:18 GMT

    Moved to tears with this tribute to Shiv. Good on you Rob. Thoroughly enjoyed it. And I thought some bloke from the present Windies think-tank was telling Shiv how to bat. Worse still, questioned his commitment. No wonder the mild-mannered Shiv took a huge objection to that slander. I'm not sure even The Great Wall Dravid matches the grit of Shiv. What a thorn he has been in our (Team India's) flesh over the years! It was a strange situation to be in as his fan from India. I would be thrilled and sad at his dismissal each and every time. The match is up for grabs once he is dismissed. That makes me happy. But the fact that my favourite is back in the pavillion makes me sad. Shiv, you will always be loved my millions of fans cutting across the geographical boundaries. No amount of stats or language could completely grab the meaning you brought to batsmanship not just for Windies Cricket but to world cricket. Take a bow my dearest Legend Shiv. Please continue. Don't retire. Please...

  • on April 28, 2012, 13:45 GMT

    One of the greatest in WI cricket! Great article!

  • AdrianVanDenStael on April 28, 2012, 13:19 GMT

    Good article about a great player. Not surprised to see so many positive comments about Chanderpaul here. One minor correction; in the second innings at Rouseau Chanders did not merely match Bravo 'stroke for stroke', but considerably outscored him, as a look at the scorecard will reveal.

  • krishay on April 28, 2012, 12:17 GMT

    Truly one of the all time GREATS!!!!! in the game. He has been overshadowed and underrated by many!!! During the test match in Trinidad, it was said that he was only above average and not great because he lacked crowd appeal The man has proven himself time and time again and his records reflect it as such he is revered wherever he plays!!!! So it's refreshing to see columns like these that pour accolades on those who deserve it.

  • on April 28, 2012, 11:30 GMT

    Perhaps the most under-rated cricketer of his times, Shivnarine ' The Tiger' Chanderpaul, never really got the dues of his greatness. Like Rahul Dravid, he was always overshadowed by his more flashy and hard-hitting team-mates. Chanderpaul is a perfect example of grit and tenacity. He's a chip off the old block. A chip that should have belonged to the invincible Windies team of the 80's. Thanks Rob Steen, for shedding light on his greatness and giving some of the credit that he deserves. It's an excellent and well-crafted article akin to a Shivnarine Chanderpaul Innings.

  • on April 28, 2012, 10:39 GMT

    Two years after Shiv made his debut in Georgetown Guyana at age 19, I made a suggestion that shiv should open the batting. This was because he bats very slow, but has the resolve and concentration of chess player. Batting at number 3 for Guyana many times he would have faced the new ball. If this was done he would have passed 10000 runs many moons ago...Truly one of the West Indian greats. Thank you shiv

  • RandyOZ on April 28, 2012, 9:32 GMT

    Epitome of class Shiv. Held up the batting with Lara for years, and is now doing it alone. Hopefully D. Bravo and Edwards can help him out.

  • S.Jagernath on April 28, 2012, 8:45 GMT

    A truly great West Indian batsmen.Hopefully he gets the oppurtunity to pass Brian Lara soon,which means he would do it with quite an impressive average too.Chanderpaul does not get the respect he deserves,batsmen like Mahela Jayawardene,who have done almost nothing at all get much more respect from cricket writers & commentators.

  • Harrypom on April 28, 2012, 8:31 GMT

    Once acted as liaison for West Indies in Bulawayo. Chanderpaul was a pleasure to be around and you couldn't help being struck by his commitment and planning to all he did "the ultimate professional". I am convinced he deserves all the accolades that he gets and I hope he earns many more!

  • since7 on April 28, 2012, 8:13 GMT

    I have reservations about calling Shiv "ugly".Aesthetic appeal in cricket has largely been hijacked to a narrow spectrum.I feel many writers implant their personal tastes on the viewers.The cricketing world's idea of a beautiful player is largely that of the gowers,laxmans,the bells,batsmen.But if one looks closer,shiv' batting has a touch of beauty about it.The manner in which he shuffles from the crab like stance to a conventional one while playing a shot,the subtle manner in which he manouvres pace behind the wicket,the "soft" hands which treat spin as if not to hurt them are all beautiful.It just takes a different perspective to appreciate it.

  • N.Sundararajan on April 28, 2012, 6:49 GMT

    N. Sundararajan from Chennai, India: God Bless You, Shiv, for what you have achieved and done for West Indies Cricket ! The true fans of the game will remember you along with the all-time greats ! Themedia and the public have not given you the fair share of the appreciation and credit, that you truly deserve ! Carry on--as long as you can--we all wish you more successes and more happiness !

  • krik8crazy on April 28, 2012, 4:37 GMT

    I have followed Chanderpaul's career ever since he partnered Lara during the latter's (then) record breaking 375 in 1994. I am glad to see Chanderpaul carve out his own niche and make a mark for himself in-spite of his limitations. After Dravid's retirement, he and Kallis are the last torch bearers of the almost extinct art of obdurate batsmanship in this 20-20 era.

  • mk49_van on April 27, 2012, 19:21 GMT

    Lovely tribute to a true fighter.

  • on April 27, 2012, 18:53 GMT

    This Article ran right through My Spines. Great Article on a Wonderful Cricketer.Long Live Shivnarine''The Tiger'' Chanderpaul.

  • RohanBhalerao on April 27, 2012, 18:23 GMT

    Mr Rob Stee, I am saying this maybe a tenth time...U r the best writer I have read on sports. Shiv Chanderpaul deserved nobody better than be immortalised through your words..

  • ashok16 on April 27, 2012, 16:54 GMT

    Too many adjectives. Selfless? Exactly how? Maybe this is all he can do. And it didnt seem like the stadium was packed yesterday to appreciate this "selfless" "skill".

    Times are changing.

  • on April 27, 2012, 16:49 GMT

    I think Shiv should be knighted...what a stallion, what class, truly the epitome of Test batsmanship

  • on April 27, 2012, 15:10 GMT

    Richards - power and fearlessness Sobers - all around greatness Lara - sheer beauty Chanderpaul- grit and determination. In my book, these 4 are the best post-world war West Indies batsmen.

  • on April 27, 2012, 14:15 GMT

    If cricket was a person, Chanderpaul would be it, I am a Sri Lankan who watched every master peice of his. yet its not enough, we have a massive time zone difference, yet i stay up to watch this true genuis, i mean my words. he is the only underrated cricketer ever, i dont think the top ten can stick up with the the last lot of an innings like chanders, who is a master and who has brought the best out of the last pairs, i dont think even the best of the best have done that...and what not? he has been fighting a lonely battle few times with Lara, lesser with Sarwan, but moreover with the last batsmen as the battling lineup was too fragile...then shine the light for windies....I think this article is great but does not speak enough of the tiger..whom i truly love...with love to Chanders...

  • MitenD on April 27, 2012, 13:25 GMT

    Fantastic achievement, Shiv. Keep batting for West Indies!

  • shark13 on April 27, 2012, 12:53 GMT

    he is the best wi batsman right now, by miles

  • on April 27, 2012, 12:33 GMT

    He wouldn't go for lara's record. He is too selfless. He would want to get more runs but not to get more than Lara.

  • on April 27, 2012, 11:55 GMT

    congrats to shiv i hope clyde butts and gibson sees the true potential and determination in the tiger and get him back in the maroon colours(ODI) again if they really wants to be nore competitive and win

  • GasPipe on April 27, 2012, 11:27 GMT

    What a wonderful article, succulently written, truly enjoyable. Congratulations Shiv, a fantastic achievement truly deserved by such a marvelous sportsman. He has been the pillar for the West Indies, and I await with interest to see who is the next great "Wall" of test cricket.

  • anantbio on April 27, 2012, 9:39 GMT

    Congrats .. Chanders, Surely he is good to last for atleast 3 years and he seems to have taken his game to a new level. Cricket needs more such batsmen, singleminded and effective with little frills !

  • AvidFanDownUnder on April 27, 2012, 8:48 GMT

    Don't mean to put the mockers on but there might be a chance that Chanderpaul Junior may also be in the Windies colours if he goes the way he is now.

  • vatsap on April 27, 2012, 7:59 GMT

    Brilliant article. If not for Chanders dedication WI cricket would be in bigger doldrums. Took over captaincy when there was a crisis. Selfless and playing to his strength. Hats off to Chanders for the 10K mark. Hope he continues for few more years.

  • venkatesh018 on April 27, 2012, 7:10 GMT

    Agree whole heartedly with the article. Along with Rahul Dravid, Chanderpaul is one of the last bastions of high qualityTest match batting.

  • lonermanifesto on April 27, 2012, 6:58 GMT

    As a Guyanese and ardent WI supporter, I not only salute Shiv on his achievement, but wish to thank Cricinfo for appointing Rob Steen to write this article. This article, in my mind, is the most superlative, superbly crafted piece of sports journalism I have ever seen. What a phenomenal piece to honour a dedicated yet underrated sportsman.

    Thank you Rob for extolling the virtues of our little Tiger from Unity, Guyana.

  • Sulli001 on April 27, 2012, 6:42 GMT

    A great article describing a true competitor. I for one would love to see him run riot in England later this summer

  • Arunvilla on April 27, 2012, 5:57 GMT

    He is certainly one the greatest batsman who was underrated for what he has achieved.it would be very disheartning to see once he retires.he along with dravid were the two batsman whom i loved to watch

  • on April 27, 2012, 5:52 GMT

    Here is a bloke who exudes defiance from every pore, who drinks adversity by the pint and emits resistance with every breath. Shiv. a true champion! Thanks Rob, love the article.

  • on April 27, 2012, 5:32 GMT

    truely selfless and dedicated effort..........

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  • on April 27, 2012, 5:32 GMT

    truely selfless and dedicated effort..........

  • on April 27, 2012, 5:52 GMT

    Here is a bloke who exudes defiance from every pore, who drinks adversity by the pint and emits resistance with every breath. Shiv. a true champion! Thanks Rob, love the article.

  • Arunvilla on April 27, 2012, 5:57 GMT

    He is certainly one the greatest batsman who was underrated for what he has achieved.it would be very disheartning to see once he retires.he along with dravid were the two batsman whom i loved to watch

  • Sulli001 on April 27, 2012, 6:42 GMT

    A great article describing a true competitor. I for one would love to see him run riot in England later this summer

  • lonermanifesto on April 27, 2012, 6:58 GMT

    As a Guyanese and ardent WI supporter, I not only salute Shiv on his achievement, but wish to thank Cricinfo for appointing Rob Steen to write this article. This article, in my mind, is the most superlative, superbly crafted piece of sports journalism I have ever seen. What a phenomenal piece to honour a dedicated yet underrated sportsman.

    Thank you Rob for extolling the virtues of our little Tiger from Unity, Guyana.

  • venkatesh018 on April 27, 2012, 7:10 GMT

    Agree whole heartedly with the article. Along with Rahul Dravid, Chanderpaul is one of the last bastions of high qualityTest match batting.

  • vatsap on April 27, 2012, 7:59 GMT

    Brilliant article. If not for Chanders dedication WI cricket would be in bigger doldrums. Took over captaincy when there was a crisis. Selfless and playing to his strength. Hats off to Chanders for the 10K mark. Hope he continues for few more years.

  • AvidFanDownUnder on April 27, 2012, 8:48 GMT

    Don't mean to put the mockers on but there might be a chance that Chanderpaul Junior may also be in the Windies colours if he goes the way he is now.

  • anantbio on April 27, 2012, 9:39 GMT

    Congrats .. Chanders, Surely he is good to last for atleast 3 years and he seems to have taken his game to a new level. Cricket needs more such batsmen, singleminded and effective with little frills !

  • GasPipe on April 27, 2012, 11:27 GMT

    What a wonderful article, succulently written, truly enjoyable. Congratulations Shiv, a fantastic achievement truly deserved by such a marvelous sportsman. He has been the pillar for the West Indies, and I await with interest to see who is the next great "Wall" of test cricket.