Good move to bat SJ in the middle
This is with reference to the comment by Elmo Rodrigopulle on Sanath
I think it is a good move to send Sanath in the middle order. There
are two reasons for it. I have seen commentators analysing his batting,
especially Tony Greig, has been pointing out that the best way to get
him out is to bowl just outside the off stump.
When he strikes at the ball he is very often caught in the slips, or
if the ball strikes the inner edge of the bat, it goes on to his stumps.
He has got out this way many a time.
The next reason is that his reflexes are slowing. At 40 his reflexes
are not that quick as at 26 years, so that he connects the ball a
fraction of a second late.
By batting in the middle order, the fast bowlers will have lost some
of the speed and accuracy and the pitch will be rather worn. So Sanath
should be able to exploit it.
When he started his Test career, he went to bat in the middle order
and (I think it was his first match) he clobbered the New Zealand attack
for 76 runs.
A local commentator disparagingly said that it was rather ‘late in
the day’ to start Test cricket, when he at 26 years walked into bat. I
don’t think that man opened his mouth again.
Opening against the Australians, in the first match itself, he sent
the first ball by McDermott, over the bowler’s head for a six.
The next ball was dispatched for 4. In another match against the same
team, he hit a six over the wicket keeper’s head in the first over by
the same bowler. That showed how quick his reflexes were.
He is an impetuous batsman and wants to get on with the job. On one
occasion when he had to face 13 balls before he scored his first run he
was like a cat on a hot tin roof. So, I think he should make good in the
middle, and let a youngster face the opening bowlers.