Way back in 1998 Laxman was still making his way into the Indian team. He was in the ODI squad in Sharjah. The opponents at Sharjah were the mighty Australians led by Steve Waugh. Sachin Tendulkar was playing the innings of his life and on the other side watching him was VVS Laxman.
Laxman was completely out of depth in that match and had a few nervous moments.
It is ironic that VVS Laxman has chosen to make Australia his favourite opponents and pressure something that he thrives under.
Just that today’s (5th Oct 2010) match into account. He managed to come out with an injured back, hang around and put together an impossible win taking India to victory by just 1 wicket.
So what makes VVS Laxman very very special?
VVS Laxman has scored 7490 runs at an average of 47.40 in Test cricket. This is a healthy no for any test cricketer but what makes him special are his match winning innings. We must have lost count of the times Laxman scores run when India truly need those runs.
In the table below are the runs scored and averages of Ponting, Tendulkar and Laxman in the 3rd or 4th innings of a test match. These numbers are usually much less flattering than career stats as all these innings are played under pressure and on a 4th or 5th day pitch.
The table above shows that Laxman average while chasing or setting victorious scores is higher than his career average. No wonder VVS Laxman is India’s go to man.