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Unfair to compare Kohli and Tendulkar: Jonty Rhodes

"Virat Kohli, he is ok. But Suresh Raina for me is the best fielder in India," commented Rhodes.

Jonty Rhodes
Jonty Rhodes. (Photo by Getty Images)

Former South African cricketer Jonty Rhodes is not a believer of comparing greats of the game across different eras. Rhodes, who is currently in India for his stint with the Ruby Warriors in the TNPL as the mentor, spoke at length about the same in a recent interaction. As per the quotes in NDTV, Rhodes noted that it is unfair to compare the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli.

He rightly mentioned that a lot of factors have to be taken into consideration before comparing two greats of the game. Sachin had the longevity factor going his way during his playing days. And now, given the amount of cricket that is being played, it is uncertain if Kohli could last that long as an athlete in the game.

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“I am not a great believer in records and I don’t like to compare players from different eras. They are wonderful players. Both are great in their own way. Tendulkar is Tendulkar and Virat (Kohli) is Virat. Tendulkar started at the age of 16 and played till the age of nearly 40, for almost 24 years and set several benchmarks. I don’t know if Kohli can play for such a long time, given the demands of a modern-day cricketer,” quoted Jonty Rhodes.

“Virat has started his career very well. His prolific run-scoring is incredible. He has made a lot of runs at a young age. Kohli must be just Kohli and should not be compared with Tendulkar,” he added.

On India’s best fielder

When asked to name who is his favorite fielder in the Indian cricket, Rhodes cited that Yuvraj Singh and Mohammad Kaif used to be very agile on the field. At present, he conceded that Indian skipper Virat Kohli is fine, but the best of the lot is Suresh Raina. Raina reminds Rhodes of his own playing days.

“Yuvraj Singh and Mohammed Kaif were some of the better fielders around. Virat Kohli, he is ok. But Suresh Raina for me is the best fielder in India. He goes for the ball, regardless of whether he thinks he can get it or not. He reminds me a lot of a much younger Jonty Rhodes,” said Rhodes.

On the dynamics of the game

In the recent times, the T20 cricket has certainly won over a lot of fans. There have been talks about the dying fortunes of the Test cricket. If Jonty Rhodes is to be believed, then it is the ODI format that is in trouble, and not the Test cricket. He also conceded that the players these days have become very fearless because of the advent of the T20 cricket.

“In my opinion it is not Test cricket, but 50-overs cricket that is in trouble. T20 has changed the way the game is played now and Test cricket has become more exciting. T20 has brought a change in the manner cricket is played these days. In Test cricket, they play with a lot of freedom now, there is no fear of failure,” quoted the former cricketer.

“When I was playing in the last century, batsmen used to struggle in the 90s. The nervous nineties they called it. There were several batsmen who got out in the 90s. Now, that is not the case. Some times, batsmen reach 100 from 94 with a single shot, a six. The players are very confident these days. I don’t think Test cricket is in trouble. In reality, 50-over cricket is in trouble,” Rhodes quoted further.

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