Jacob Joseph Martin
May 11, 1972, Baroda, Gujarat
Right hand bat
Even though Jacob Martin did not exactly set the Yarra on fire on the tour of Australia in 1999-2000, he did give enough evidence in his batting style that, if encouraged, he could be a long-term prospect. In the first place, no can question Martin's insatiable appetite for runs. One of only half a dozen players in the history of the Ranji Trophy championship to get over 1000 runs in a season, Martin, thanks to his great deeds for Baroda during 1998-99, became a nationally known figure. He was one of those who forced their way into the Indian team by strong performances around the domestic circuit. But unlike some others who also made the grade on similar credentials, Martin showed that he was made of sterner stuff.
In addition to his hunger for runs, Martin has the right approach and an ideal temperament and has the makings of a solid middle-order batsman. He was perhaps a bit unfortunate in that he was run out so often in Australia, more often than not because of some superb work in the field. But as he showed while making 39 in a losing cause against Pakistan in the Carlton & United series, he has a wide range of strokes, coupled with impeccable timing and technique. He is one who should be judged not just on facts and figures, but on style and attitude.
Martin shifted allegiance to Railways in the 2002-03 domestic season before returning to represent Baroda for four more seasons. He announced his retirement in the middle of the 2007-08 season - a decision taken hastily after selection issues - but decided to revert his decision and return for the 2008-09 season.
Partab Ramchand (November 2007)
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