What’s the story?
Murali Vijay has been in decent form in the long Test season on home soil. The 32-year-old has batted with immense patience and has spent a lot of time in the middle in recent times. The right-hander is one of the few players who is technically close to perfection.
Former Indian team director, Ravi Shastri, highlighted the same while speaking to Sportstar. He said, “He’s a fine ‘leaver’ of the ball, handles the short ball well. For an opener, he is a terrific player of spin. He’s just a solid player who makes runs in all conditions. Vijay is mentally strong, will be around for some more time.”
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Vijay is currently playing his 50th Test match and interestingly enough, it is against the same opposition he made his debut in 2008. The right-hander is famous for his stylish shots and has repeatedly exhibited his ability to play long and patient knocks in the longer format of the game.
In his last 10 Test matches, Vijay has three invaluable tons to his name but surprisingly, he has also recorded seven scores of less than 10.
The heart of the matter
Former Team India director, Shastri, was all praise for the senior Indian opener, who scored 82 off 183 balls in the on-going Test match before throwing his wicket away in extremely bizarre manner. After missing out on the second Test, Vijay staged a fine return in the third Test match of the tied series.
Shastri, meanwhile, stated that Vijay should have got to his hundred as that would have capped off his 50th Test. He went on to heap praise on the Chennai-born opener for his ability to handle pressure and also the way he can change the tempo of a cricket match. Shastri added that he expects Vijay to prolong his career for a few more years and score more runs in the Test arena.
The Indian team is heavily reliant on the top order, of which Vijay is a part, for runs against the gritty Aussies. The right-hander will turn 33 on the 1st of April but like many other Indian batsmen, the elegant stroke-maker will remain pivotal in captain Kohli’s team at least for the next two years because of the experience he brings to the side.
Vijay has been a little inconsistent with the bat in recent times but he still boasts a Test average close to 40 along with nine centuries. The Test format is one in which experience counts along with technique and with very few experienced openers available for the Indian selectors, it is easy to agree with Shastri that Vijay will carry on playing for a few more years in the international circuit.