Even before his first-class debut, Bengal players spoke highly of Wriddhiman Saha. The son of a former football player took just one match to show why. Apart from scoring a hundred on his Ranji Trophy debut against Hyderabad, at the Eden Gardens in 2007-08, Saha also took a brilliant catch, diving high and backwards to his left to dismiss V.V.S. Laxman.
But instead of resting on his laurels, Saha kept working on his game, his fitness and surprised all by becoming the first-choice wicketkeeper, ahead of Brendon McCullum, in the Kolkata Knight Riders side.
“I have always tried to improve my game, be it in club or in first-class games. The India call-up gives me a chance to learn further and see how great players like Sachin Tendulkar go about their job. I’m happy but not overjoyed. A lot more remains to be learnt,” Saha told HT.
“Getting the India cap was a dream but the goal has always been to get better as a cricketer.”
For a wicketkeeper, Saha’s stance is unusual because he doesn’t crouch, and instead, stands with his waist bent. That he half stands, half bends gives Saha that extra fraction of a second to react to an edge because he can move towards the ball straightaway instead of getting up and reaching for it.
While batting at No. 3 against the new ball on a few occasions, Saha has shown an astute judgement of where the off stump is, in seaming conditions. He can shift gears too, as was evident in the Deodhar Trophy last season.
But batting is an area where he can get better. Given his temperament, there is no reason why he can’t.