Why Virender Sehwag is the greatest test cricket opening batsman of all time?

ICC is selecting the greatest test team of all time in July 2011...
ICC has nominated following opening batsmen as possible contenders: Geoffrey Boycott, Sunil Gavaskar, Gordon Greenidge, Desmond Haynes, Jack Hobbs, Len Hutton, Hanif Mohammad, Virender Sehwag, Herbert Sutcliffe and Victor Trumper

I feel that Virender Sehwag is the best opener among all the nominees for following reasons:
Commanding test average of 53.43
·    Virender Sehwag scored his 7,694 runs in 87 tests at an commendable average of 53.43 runs per innings
·    No other opening batsman of modern era has better average than him
·    All three players who fared better than him played their cricket before emergence of One Day cricket
Strike rate of 81.91
·    Virender Sehwag changed the way openers should play the test cricket. He has strike rate of 81.91 runs per 100 balls faced
·    No other nominee is anywhere close to this figure to make any sensible comparison
·    Just to provide some clarity, Sehwag’s strike rate of 81.91 is greater than ODI strike rate of all the other nominees
Only opener to score two triple hundreds
·    Virender Sehwag is the only test opener in the world with two triple centuries, 319 against South Africa and 309 against arch rivals Pakistan
·    It took only 530 and 531 minutes, respectively, for Sehwag to make these massive scores. Len Hutton took 797 minutes while Hanif Mohammad made with 970 minutes at the crease
Highest number of double hundreds by the opener
·    Virender Sehwag scored 6 double centuries till date as a test opening batsman
·    While Len Hutton and Sunil Gavaskar scored 4 doubled centuries each in their career
·    This shows tendency of Virender Sehwag to make bigger scores more frequently compared with other nominees
Fastest double and triple centuries
·    Sehwag features 5 times in the top 10 fastest double centuries of all time. His slowest double hundred came in 227 balls speaks lat about his devastating style of batting
·    While both his triple centuries came in quick time in 278 balls and 364 balls, respectively
·    Needless to say that none of other nominees feature in either of these lists
Highest runs in a day
·    Virender Sehwag ranks 1st in terms of most runs scored in a day by the opening batsman among all the nominees
·    He scored 284 runs against Sri Lanka in 2009
·    2nd and 3rd rank goes to none other than Viru with scores of 257 and 228 runs in a single day
Highest runs in a calendar year
·    Among all nominees, Sehwag ranks 1st and 2nd with scores in excess of 1,400 during 2008 and 2010
·    He scored 1,462 in 2008 while1,422 in 2010
·    Only Sunil Gavaskar could offer some competition to great Sehwag with 1,407 in 1979 and 1,310 runs in 1983

Conclusion
·    Sehwag in not only one of most gifted opening batsman of all time but he is the greatest opener in the history of test cricket
·    One must notice that he is playing in an era where demanding versions such as ODI and 20-20 cricket are occupying significant time of calendar year for the cricketer
·    Due to his devastating style of batting, on many occasions he has sealed the result of test match in the first session itself
·    Sehwag plays the game in most positive manner in which batsman’s role is to score runs and not to spend minutes. He plays for a win and not for a draw!
·    Most importantly, while all other nominees are not active cricketers, Sehwag is still playing. This can take him to the levels where “nominee list” could become just a formality!
Source for Statistics: ESPN Cricinfo
Why Virender Sehwag is the greatest test cricket opening batsman of all time? Why Virender Sehwag is the greatest test cricket opening batsman of all time? Reviewed by Boneless Research on 16.7.11 Rating: 5

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