The quartet of Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, Joe Root and Kane Williamson is widely regarded as the ‘Fab Four’ in modern-day cricket. Though, in recent times, Pakistan captain Babar Azam, with his consistent performance across the formats, has pushed the storyline to ‘Fab Five’.
Speaking about the same, former Australia all-rounder, Shane Watson has ranked his choices among the unofficial ‘Fab Five’ in the present era.
Watson placed Kohli at the top, stating that the Indian superstar continues to maintain the range and intensity across the formats. Notably, Kohli has been in a lean patch of form for quite some time now, having last scored a 100 in November 2019. Despite that, Watson reckoned that Kohli is the best batsman in world cricket at the moment.
“I am always going to say Virat Kohli because he just continues to maintain that range in all formats. He has got such high intensity every time he goes out there to play for India, and he just maintains it. So in Test cricket, yes Virat Kohli,” said Watson in interaction with Isa Guha on ICC Review Show.
Watson observed that Smith should have been second on the list, but his struggles off late and the rapid rise of Babar , has forced him to change his opinion.
“One thing is that Steve Smith started to come off a little bit. It is just that it looks like he not putting that same pressure on bowlers as he did when he was at his absolute best. So for me, Steve sort of dropped down on that list a little bit. Babar Azam is now playing just incredibly well, and we can look how well he is adapting his game to Test cricket as well. So Babar Azam is probably No.2 at the moment,” added Watson.
After naming the top three, the Queenslander signed off by picking New Zealand captain Williamson and former England skipper Root. Notably, Root had a phenomenal time with the bat in the recent past, having amassed 3416 runs in 65 innings with 12 centuries. Yet Watson put Root alongside Williamson in the bottom-two spots.
“Kane Williamson has had a few elbow issues. He just knows how to bat and put pressure on the bowlers. Joe Root, he has had a bit of a time. It is strange how these world-class batters have these phases where instead of scoring those big hundreds, score the 70s or 80s and still have a big impact on the game but aren’t able to maintain those real high standards they set themselves by scoring those big runs as they did in the past,” Watson added further.