Hailed as one of the best fielders the country has ever produced, Mohammad Kaif was one-of-a-kind and a treat to watch on the field because of his athleticism and incredible skill to pounce on the cricket ball like a tiger. Apart from his more than decent batting exploits, Kaif’s heroics on the field had led India to several famous triumphs at the world stage. Now, spending his time as a cricket commentator or expert – Kaif reckons the current Team India has good fielders but none of them is a ‘complete package’ like Yuvraj Singh and he himself. Also Read - Eid Mubarak: Twitterati Keeps the Spirit of Eid Alive, Wishes For Peace & Harmony in the World
With no cricketing action currently going on due to Coronavirus pandemic, Kaif also opted for the social media route to engage with his fans. During the live interaction with YouTube channel ‘SportScreen’, the 39-year-old also weighed in on the debate of who is a better white-ball cricketer – Virat Kohli or Rohit Sharma? Also Read - India Records Over 6,000 COVID-19 Cases For 4th Consecutive Day, Total Tally Reaches 1,38, 845; Death Toll Crosses 4,000-mark
Calling it a tough choice to pick between two modern-day stalwarts, Kaif said that if he had to choose between the two had they been playing for different teams, he would prefer watching the stylish Mumbaikar – Rohit. However, Kaif went on to add that India captain Kohli is on another level across formats. Also Read - 'Finished Taking Hydroxychloroquine, Still Here,' Says Donald Trump Week After Revealing His COVID-19 Therapy
“If you ask me, I will love to watch Rohit Sharma bat. Just to watch. Both have long careers ahead of them and both are exceptional batters. Virat Kohli is on another level. His record in Test matches is amazing. He is brilliant in ODIs and T20s too. But if I have the option, I would love to watch Rohit Sharma bat (in white-ball cricket),” the former India cricketer said.
“He has elegance. He always has a lot of time at the crease. He never seems to be in a rush. He bats with ease. When he times the ball, it travels so fast. There are few batsmen who take you to the cleaners but you don’t get to realise that he is putting in a lot of effort,” he added.
Asked about his take on Indian fielding compared to the times when Yuvraj would man the point and he would stand at extra cover, Kaif outlined the lacking in the current set-up.
“To be a complete package, you need to be a good catcher, you should be able to hit the stumps often, you should be able to run fast, you should have the right technique to grab a moving ball,” Kaif said.
“When we were playing, me and Yuvraj made our mark as good fielders. Today, you will find a lot of good fielders in the Indian team, but I don’t think there is anyone who is a complete package as a fielder.
“A person who can catch in the slips, who can take a catch at short-leg, can field in long-on boundary by running fast .that package I think is missing,” Kaif further explained his point.
The 39-year-old Kaif said that Ravindra Jadeja is becoming better with age but India’s slip catching has still left a lot to be desired.
“Ravindra Jadeja is a good fielder, in fact as he is adding on the years, his fielding is also improving. But India’s slip fielding isn’t up to scratch.”