Virender Sehwag: 284 not out overnight. This was Test cricket.
The Sri Lankan players couldn’t just soak it up for 20 overs before seeing if they could do better. This problem wasn’t going away. But what they had to endure almost all day, the crowd got to enjoy all day – that’s the other thing about Test cricket.
We’re not hugely enamoured of matches where batsmen dominate. The other day we complained about the one dimensional nature of a Twenty20 match between South Africa and England. This wasn’t at all like that.
In the South Africa-England match, the batsmen only played the mow to cow corner. Sehwag’s innings has been completely different. Virender Sehwag’s batting approach is all about dominating, but it’s not a bludgeoning, repetitive domination. It’s sophisticated.
It’s the difference between dominating for 12 overs with one muscular shot and dominating for a whole day under a fierce sun, playing reverse sweeps, lofted drives, deft cuts, leg glances and every other shot that might steer the ball between the fielders.
It’s the difference between Twenty20 and Tests.