Virender Sehwag changed the way test Cricket is played with his attacking batsmanship. As VVS Laxman once said in a conversation with Harsha Bhogle, it is very difficult to have another Virender Sehwag because of his unique thought process and approach. Viru has often said that the biggest gap is between the sky and the bowlers head. This approach worked wonders in a career spanning 104 tests and it is remarkable that inspite of his high risk taking ability ,Viru holds the record for the top 3 scores in Test Cricket by an Indian. In fact he has 4 in the top 6 test scores by an Indian. He scored over 8500 test runs at a strike-rate of over 82.
His 309 against Pakistan at Multan has become his landmark innings, but he bettered it by scoring 319 at Chennai against a South African attack comprising of Steyn,Morkel,Ntini and Kallis. His innings of 293 against Sri Lanka at Brabourne Stadium will go down as one of the most effortless assault in the history of Test Cricket. He scored 284 not out on a day when only 79 overs were bowled in the day and an attack which had Muralitharan and Baad amongst others.
Viru’s 3 phenomenal innings are followed by VVS Laxman’s miraculous 281 against Australia at Eden Gardens in one of the biggest turnarounds witnessed in Test history. Rahul Dravid’s 270 against Pakistan at Rawalpindi in the same series in which Viru scored his 309 comes at no.5. Viru is back again at no.6 for his 254 against Pakistan at Lahore during the 2006 series.
This is followed by two innings from Sachin Tendulkar, one of 248 not out against Bangladesh and the 241 not out he scored at Sydney, which till date remains the highest test score by an Indian outside the sub-continent. The 9th highest test score by an Indian is Saurav Ganguly’s 239 against Pakistan at Bangalore. At number 10 on the list is Sunil Gavaskar’s 236 not out against West Indies which for 18 years remained the highest test score by an Indian, before VVS Laxman broke it.
The impact Virender Sehwag had for India in Test Cricket is beyond numbers but the fact that he has 4 of the top 6 test scores in a country which has produced some of the best batsman in the world proves his phenomenal contribution to the game.