HomeCricketFinally, Shivnarine Chanderpaul’s greatest cricketing moment arrives post cricket...

Finally, Shivnarine Chanderpaul’s greatest cricketing moment arrives post cricket retirement

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Shivnarine Chanderpaul has just recently been inducted into the checkered Hall of Fame by the almighty ICC. 

There are doors everyone can enter. Then the doors that you have an exclusive membership to and finally, those golden walkways of life that are, to put it mildly, by invitation-only. 

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You know the ones that aren’t about entitlement, but merit. 

One can say, the ICC Hall of Fame is akin to the golden gate that all wish to enter, but only a few have the privilege to. 

But must it be remembered, only on account of sheer bloody minded determination can one succeed at entering them. 

For a batsman known for his grit as also for a highly unusual batting stance, the Hall-of-induction of the famous Guyanese finally puts to rest years and years of wallowing in neglect or truth be told, sheer lack of recognition. 

This is a homecoming of sorts in some ways for the Demerara batter who spent an entire cricketing career travelling to and fro the West Indies for one big pursuit: run scoring. 

The Guyanese hit 2007 boundaries in his international cricket career when you club his Test and ODI numbers. 

And even then it’s no mean feat is it that Chanderpaul scored  almost 8,028 of his 20,645 runs came by way of boundaries. 

And yet one of Chanderpaul’s lofty achievements is that he helped his team combat lethal attacks as he ended up firing 41 international centuries, 30 of which came alone in five day cricket. 

Actually little is made to appreciate a core truth about Shivnarine Chanderpaul’s achievements. 

And it’s that at a time where much like others, he too could’ve simply cussed the Windies cricket board for being abysmal throughout his career, not nearly paying well enough and for dubious management of talents, Chanderpaul mellowed down and dedicated himself to rescuing what was often a troubled ship. 

If you happen to think that Chanderpaul with 30 Test hundreds to his name was a Test match specialist, and not really a great one day player, then it ought to be reminded with that Chanderpaul was the king of adapting himself to the team’s needs. 

He once opened, went down the order, came even at three and despite the constant difficulties and several hits and trial methods, showed the world what he was capable of in run chase. 

He once repaired a West Indies inning that was going nowhere during the 97 tour to South Africa by scoring a 150. There was a Lara abysmally out of form during that white ball contests. 

Not that Chanderpaul whined, not one bit. 

He often toyed with Indian bowlers and kept Pakistan’s famed pace attack at bay. 

He even hit the winning runs in a sublime last over finish against Sri Lanka, where a final ball six came off the bat of someone who’d much rather leave deliveries and practice restraint. 

If anything, that Shivnarine Chanderpaul is a name that stands next to 432 international caps for the West Indies given his ODI and Tests campaigns says a thing or two about his longevity as a cricketer. 

But it wasn’t just longevity or the fact that he played long innings even under pressure that marks his greatness. 

It’s the very fact that despite not being given the kind of fanfare Lara got naturally , Chanderpaul didn’t whine and placed grace and congeniality on the absolute top in a list of must haves for a cricketer. 

There were many an occasion where the world threw everything at him; loss of early West Indian wickets, Lara dismissed cheaply and what not- but Shivnarine Chanderpaul batted and batted and batted. 

Warne tried his best to irk him as did McGrath and Gillespie. Then there were Murali and Vaas, Srinath and Kumble as also Vettori, Cairns and Chris Harris. But all dreaded the tireless Chanderpaul’s faultless game that had all the time in the world.

Whether it was the peculiar manner in which he took guard or the manner in which he quietly asserted his brilliance despite knowing well that many a time his opponents weren’t half there yet, Shiv Chanderpaul remained a solider. 

He’s been a great soldier of the West Indies cause especially in times where they’d lose the plot and there were many occasions such as the 1997-98 Tests played vs South Africa.

He was both- fire and ice and on some occasions, the runner and the award winner himself. 

He was the answer to the fad that in times of panache and flair, simplicity would still hold the key as would the art of self preservation. 

But what’s true is that in an age that quickly changed from being team-performance-driven to a game revolving around individual brilliance’s, Chanderpaul’s deeds were for the team and for upholding its situation. 

One is rather surprised whilst also glad that finally the Hall of fame induction came for this selfless hero of West Indian cricket. He’s a hero who played several world cup editions such as the 96, 99 and, 2003 and 2007 campaign as well. But then what took the game’s mighty parent body so long? 

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Dev Tyagi
Dev Tyagi
Dravid believer, admirer of - the square drive, Drew Barrymore, Germany, Finland, Electric Mobility, simplicity and the power of the written word! Absolutely admire contributing to KyroSports

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