Cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra on Sunday revealed his list of top-six Indian fielders and rated all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja above the rest.
On his YouTube channel, Chopra talked in detail about the best six Indian fielders he has watched so far. The list included gun fielders including Indian captain Virat Kohli and former cricketers Mohammad Kaif and Yuvraj Singh.
Kohli is placed at the 6th position in Chopra’s list as the former Delhi cricketer feels that the Indian skipper has improved a lot as a fielder but still needs to work more on his slip catching.
“As he is growing as a player he is growing as a fielder. He has dropped catches but you make him field anywhere, whether it be in deep or outfield, or if you watch his throws. His agility is intense. The best thing is he wants to be there. Though, he is still not the best slip fielder till now,” Chopra said.
Kapil Dev, who led India to the 1983 World Cup triumph, was named as the fifth-best fielder from the nation by Chopra. The 42-year-old recalled Kapil Dev’s iconic catch which he took while running backwards to send dangerous Vivian Richards back to the pavilion in the World Cup final.
“Everyone saw him (Kapil Dev) taking the catch of Vivian Richards in the finals of the 1983 World Cup, he had great hands and was very agile,” Chopra reflected while talking about Kapil.
Kaif and Yuvraj occupied the 3rd and 4th positions, respectively in Chopra’s list. The Agra-born said Yuvraj had a massive built but was very agile on the field and rated his throws better than that of Kaif.
“Yuvraj Singh was sensational at point. He would dive and get hold of the ball. Yuvraj had a massive built but was a very agile fielder. He would directly hit at the wickets. His name has to be there in the list.
“Mohammad Kaif created revolution in Indian fielding. He would dive, jump and was good in the slips as well. Yuvraj Singh’s throw was better than Kaif in terms of direct throws,” Chopra added.
The runners-up in Chopra’s list was out-of-favour India batsman Suresh Raina. Chopra called Raina “sensational” and a complete fielding package.
“Suresh Raina was absolutely sensational and still is. He cuts the angles well, he would cover the field well, would field in the deep well. Raina provides you the complete package. Suresh Raina has to be there amongst the best.”
Finally, not to anyone’s surprise, Chopra picked Ravindra Jadeja as the best Indian fielder he has seen till now. Chopra said that the rocket-arm of Jadeja is the best in the world and his overall fielding skill cover-up for his shortcomings in the slip cordon.
“The winner is Sir Ravindra Jadeja, he has a rocket arm. His arms are currently the best in the world. His ground coverage is one of the best. In slips, he is not the best; the rest of his fielding covers all the other short comes,” Chopra concluded.