Fan Article: Are our players' comparison healthier?
Being a huge fan and supporter of cricket, I'm engaged with a lot of groups that discuss international cricket. In this journey of being involved with cricket and cricket fanatics, I've noticed one particular thing in common in every groups, i.e. comparison of players.
Now, comparison is an integral part of cricket, so are criticism and appreciation. In fact, figuring out and distributing legendary, great or average players would not have been possible if 'comparison' would not exist.
And to be honest, even I accept the fact that I'm comparing two or more players every now and then, everyone does. However, there's one thing about comparison that bothers me; comparing cricketers of different roles in their team. Not only am I bothered, but I've also tried listening to the opinions of a variety of cricket fans to come to a conclusion. During the course, the anecdotes of debates and discussions have been interesting as well.
In my humblest opinion, cricketers who play different roles for their teams shouldn't be kept in the same frame of comparison, never. For example; how would you compare the greatness of Sachin Tendulkar with the consistency and utility of Jacques Kallis?
Where did this topic arise from? I started giving rats to this question, when I encountered a Facebook post that tried comparing a legendary batsman and a great all-rounder. Believe me, if we start believing in comparing players having diverse roles, the list of the greatest cricketers of all times would constitute only of all founders.
So, how to get rid of this? Speaking frankly, the comparison is not the villain here, the way of comparison is. The whole base of comparing cricketers is the quantity of accumulation of runs and wickets, nowadays. FALSE
What's the solution? SIMPLE. What you'll need to do is simple, just answer the below questions.
Among X (a batsman) and Y (an all-rounder, who justify their positions in a better way? Or, are they best at what they are doing?
The next option is, who would you rather have in your All Time Test/ODI XI? Though cricket had produced so many greats in the several decades, only the bests get featured in most XIs. If you make a deeper look, the idea I mentioned doesn't directly compare the different roles of cricket, but compares cricketers with their contemporaries. This method, for me, is the best way to establish diplomacy in cricket.