Virat Kohli, Sachin Tendulkar in Kevin Pietersen’s top five batsmen’s list
Kevin Pietersen, former England captain, has picked India captain Virat Kohli and Sachin Tendulkar in list of batsmen he admires the most.cricket Updated: Feb 02, 2018 19:25 IST
Kevin Pietersen has named batting great Sachin Tendulkar and the flamboyant West Indian Chris Gayle among the top five batsmen in his list, putting the likes of AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli together on the fifth spot.
In a video interview with cricket.com.au, Pietersen has put the legendary South African all-rounder Jacques Kallis at the top spot, lavishing praise on the cricketer who finished with more than 13,000 Test runs, more than 11,500 ODI runs and an equally impressive 666 runs in 25 T20Is at 35.05.
Australia’s former captain Ricky Ponting is also among the top five batsmen named by the former England cricketer, who recently brought an end to his professional career during the ongoing Big Bash League 2017-18 tournament.
Heaping praise on Kallis, Pietersen said, “Kallis… technique wise unbelievable, batted for hours, magician with the bat in his hands considering he bowled as many overs as he did and stood at second slip.”
Terming Ponting as ‘phenomenal’ and ‘superstar’, Pietersen placed his former Ashes rival at the second position in his list.
The Chennai Test in 2008 had followed the devastating Mumbai terror attacks, and Pietersen recalled Tendulkar’s knock saying, “… the hundred that he scored against us in Chennai when all odds were against India and he scored that fourth innings hundred… I was the captain. The way that he was able to manipulate, punch the ball (with a) heavy bat just phenomenal.”
Tendulkar had dedicated his fourth-innings 103 not out in a tricky chase to those affected in the Mumbai terror attacks.
Placing the maverick Gayle — a T20 legend who has 11,000 and more runs alongside two triple centuries in Test cricket — in his list, Pietersen wondered, “How hard he hits the ball and how far he hits the ball… I mean just out of this world.”
Terming Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers as the ones who epitomise batting today, Pietersen said, “I will put them into a bracket of their own. They epitomise the modern day 360 degree player ability. They hit wherever they want to hit the ball.”