World Cup 2019: Team-wise best and under-par fielders in tournament
Modern-day fielding has been transformed when it comes to fielders giving it their all on the field.
Published - May 30, 2019 12:31 pm | Updated - May 30, 2019 12:31 pm
It may be highly cliched, but ‘catches do win matches’ and ‘runs saved are runs scored’, especially in the 50-over format of cricket. Modern-day fielding has been transformed when it comes to fielders giving it their all on the field to back up their bowlers, diving here and there and plucking some impossible looking catches.
In the last 6-7 years, fitness standards have gone through the roof with players from teams like Australia, England, New Zealand breaking records on yo-yo test scores and setting new standards of fitness. This has helped fielders speed up their movements on the turf and reflexes while close in fielding as well. However, with every positive thing, comes a balancing aspect and every team in the ICC World Cup has their shares of great fielders combined with some who have to be hidden in the field.
Here is a look at the best and worst fielders in each team participating this ICC World Cup
Best fielder – Glenn Maxwell
Glenn Maxwell is inarguably the best fielder in the Kangaroos clan which comprises good fielders in likes of David Warner and Steve Smith. Not only Maxwell is a great ground fielder anywhere in the ground he is an amazing catcher as well. However, he gives his biggest contribution at the backward point position, stopping boundaries with amazing dives and affecting runouts with accurate direct hits. He is perhaps the most technically proficient fielder getting into perfect positions every time he has an opportunity to complete a catch or shoot the stumps.
Under-par fielder- Adam Zampa
Adam Zampa is usually seen fielding on the boundary where the skipper can hide him effectively. Not that he is a bad fielder, he hasn’t done anything of notice to show off his brilliance in the field is concerned. He is never employed inside the ring is given that he has a tendency to drop catches and balls tend to go through his legs. His throws lack accuracy majority of times and overall, he can be termed as the worst fielder of the Australian team.
Best Fielder — Rashid Khan
Rashid Khan may be hailed as one of the best leg-spinners in short formats of the game and can also tonk the ball to all parts of the ground easily, but one aspect of his game is often overlooked and that is his fielding. hence, Rashid is an absolute “three-dimensional player”. Khan is one of the best outfielders in the business today being a livewire on the boundary.
Many remember his sliding saves and his amazing one-handed catch in IPL 2018, which was part of that year’s highlight reel. Despite his shorter height, his throws from the deep are pinpoint accurate and he has shown many times what he can do in the field during his appearances in various T20 leagues.
Under-par Fielder — Hamid Hassan
Hamid Hassan will feature in his second ICC event and his career has been plagued with injuries have been detrimental to a point that he was out of the team for three years before this call-up. The injuries had an effect on his fielding as well since his weak knees have made it hard for him to run fast in the outfield and almost impossible to slide or dive. Admitting his drawbacks, Hassan has announced retirement from ODI cricket after the tournament. Bangladesh
Best Fielder — Soumya Sarkar
Soumya Sarkar has enthralled with his amazing fielding on the boundary or in the slips. A safe catcher, Sarkar gave everyone a highlight reel moment in the World T20 2016, when he plucked a one-handed catch out of nowhere to send back a dangerous looking Hardik Pandya. Sarkar is amazing in slips as well both to quick bowlers and spinners and has been employed at various positions inside the circle as well. But is a specialist on keeping runs down on the boundary ropes.
Under-par Fielder — Rubel Hossain
They say fast bowlers make great fielders at least on the boundaries, but this rule doesn’t apply to Rubel Hossain. The speedster is a great runner and has lots of stamina, but somehow manages to bungle even the simplest of chances to stop a ball or take a catch in the outfield due to sheer incompetence. But that doesn’t mean that he is not putting his 100% for the team on the field.
Best Fielder- Ben Stokes
Ben Stokes is an all-rounder in the true sense given that he is a gun bowler, bats amazingly well and most importantly, is a brilliant fielder and a safe catcher. Stokes has shown that he has bucket likes hands in slips making him a safe bet in that position. But he has also patrolled backward point easily and has shown the intent to dive and stop certain boundaries. Stokes also possesses an amazing throw from the outfield and has a good record with direct hits.
Under-par Fielder — Adil Rashid
Adil Rashid is a competent fielder, who has had moments of bad fielding that have ruined his reputation in the field. The more than brilliant leg-spinner is known to be clumsy in the field, make too many mistakes out there and his slow movement has set him apart from the otherwise brilliant England fielders.
Best Fielder — Ravindra Jadeja
Ravindra Jadeja is by far the best fielder in the Indian team and probably amongst the best in the world at the moment. He is amazing at backward point and batsmen are actually afraid of taking a single when the ball goes near him and rather stay planted in the crease. Jadeja’s accuracy of hitting the stumps is legendary and many have taken the risk and lost their wicket. His catching is absolutely brilliant whether close in or deep in the outfield, or even off his own bowling, Jadeja rarely misses any chances.
Under-par Fielder — Yuzvendra Chahal
Yuzvendra Chahal is not highly rated as a fielder even by his teammates and that is mostly attributed to his wiry frame and notoriousness for dropping even the simplest of chances and probably his mates pray that ball doesn’t go to him, in the air or along the field.
Best Fielder- Trent Boult
Trent Boult has changed the perception that fast bowlers are not athletic fielders. Pacers are known to be good runners and having amazing good throwing arms, but Boult has made fielding on the boundary an art. He dives and tumbles in the field to take some amazing catches and stopping important runs and many of his brilliance in the field and his numerous jaw-dropping moments are present on YouTube for all to see.
Under-par Fielder — Ish Sodhi
Sodhi might be an amazing spinner for Kiwis, but he is definitely not the best fielder in a team full of amazing ones. The leggie lumbers while running after the ball or setting himself up under a catch and possibly even his own teammates might not trust him with an absolute skier of the catch.
Best Fielder — Shadab Khan
On contrary to Ish Sodhi, Pakistani leggie Shadab Khan is amazing inside the 30-yard circle for the Men in Green. Athletic and nimble on his feet, Shadab is also blessed with wonderfully safe catching hands. He is so good that Sarfaraz often trusts him at important positions like the point or backward point, which sees the most traffic in catches and balls coming to him at high speeds, testing his already good reflexes.
Under-par Fielder — Imad Wasim
Imad Wasim maybe one of the most trusted spinners and lower order batsman in Pakistan team, but his fielding is surely not the strongest suit of his game. Despite being a young guy, Imad is a slow mover in the field and usually is stationed in low traffic areas like fine leg and third man or deep square leg. Catching-wise, Imad cannot be blamed much, but much improvement can be made in his case.
Best Fielder- Faf du Plessis
South Africa team has always prided on its fielding ever since they were reinstated in international cricket in 1992. From the likes of Jonty Rhodes, Brian McMillan and Herschelle Gibbs to the modern-day masters like AB de Villiers, and Faf du Plessis; the Proteas have always produced world-class fielders.
Apart from being the skipper of the team, Faf du Plessis is brilliant in the slips, at covers or long on or long off positions on the boundary. He has pretty much the safest hands without gloves in the team and despite being 34 years of age, is one of the fastest on the field. Batsmen rarely take him on for two runs given that he has a pretty much accurate throw in the team.
Under-par Fielder- Tabraiz Shamsi
Tabraiz Shamsi had bucked the trend by choosing to master the art of left-arm wrist spin but forgot to dedicate time to his fielding drills. Shamsi, who has worked hard on his fitness, had to be hidden in the field mostly in unimportant spots in the field. Shamsi is not the fastest in the field to patrol the boundaries and is not athletic enough to man the critical positions in the circle, hence is usually stationed at the third man or fine leg. Sri Lanka
Best Fielder — Dhananjaya de Silva
Dhananjaya de Silva is one of the brightest spots for Sri Lankans in the field. Tremendously athletic, De Silva is seen usually manning the backward point, covers and short mid-on positions which see catches come regularly and he stops valuable runs. His nimble feet help him react to quick chances easily.
Under-par Fielder — Lasith Malinga
Lasith Malinga was one of the most dependable fielders at one point of time, but thanks to wobbly knees and back issues, has become the worst fielder in the team. Malinga usually fields on the boundary, has become slower when he has to chase the ball down, but always give his 100% to every effort.
Best Fielder — Shimron Hetmyer
Shimron Hetmyer brings amazing electricity to the West Indies’ fielding unit and is a livewire in the field and usually patrols the boundary. His commitment to the field is always a hundred per cent. A safe catcher in the field, he also has a rocket arm which keeps the batsmen from turning singles into doubles whenever the ball goes near him.
Under-par Fielder- Chris Gayle
The universe boss Chris Gayle is now 39 years old and it shows in his fielding as well. He has become someone who is usually stationed in slips, where he is still very good when spinners are on. However, apart from that, he sees himself fielding in the 30-yard circle, as his fragile body no longer enables him to dive or run after the ball often. He wishes to enjoy his final World Cup with the focus solely on his batting.