Virender Sehwag is under a lot of pressure for his run of low scores in recent times but former team-mate VVS Laxman believes that the India opener's strength is to stick to his game plan regardless of his form.
"It’s just unreal. Sehwag is one batsman I really love watching bat. Some of the shots that he plays are unbelievable. People mostly talk about Sehwag’s skills and the ability to hit the ball. But for me what stands out is his temperament," Laxman told BCCI.tv in an interview.
"Irrespective of whether he’s in form or not, he sticks to his game plan and believes in himself. Sometimes, I wondered why can’t we all play like he does?"
Indeed, a lot of players would also wonder why they can't play for Laxman. Ajinkya Rahane, for instance, has come out and said that he doesn't mind batting in any position. The Hyderabadi, on the other hand, after an initial tryst with opening, said he wanted to bat in the middle order and that's where he stayed for the rest of his career.
"Everyone has a certain role to play. I’ve always been taught by my parents to honestly perform whatever role has been assigned to you to the best of your ability. I started off as a middle-order batsman, opened the innings for four years and then came back in the middle-order. To play for my country in itself was the most satisfying feeling for me. I cannot say that I would’ve contributed more at No.3."
"It was a big challenge. Batting at No.5 and 6 was very new to me and something I had to adapt to, especially in terms of batting with the tail. I started to bat at that position from 2000-01 and it was difficult in the beginning. Initially, when batting with the tail, I tended to throw my wicket away, trying to play big shots. But with time, I learned that it was important to have partnerships with the lower-order batsmen. The key to that was to communicate well with them and form strategies. I also realised that to get the best out of the tailenders it was important to give them confidence. This understanding helped me achieve a lot of success. Also, I was very lucky to play with bowlers who took a lot of pride in their batting and worked hard on their batting. I’ve had some memorable partnerships with some of the bowlers."